Bruce Springsteen canceled a North Carolina concert to protest a new law designed to keep sexual predators out of the bathroom his own daughter would have used at his performance. Breaking his commitment cost the Greensboro Coliseum a net revenue loss of around $100,000.
Not to be outdone, Bryan Adams canceled a Mississippi concert in protest of a new civil rights bill that protects the conscience rights of blacks in a state that once was world-renowned for racial prejudice.
So on the grounds of personal principle, Bruce Springsteen is now officially a general in the war on women, and Bryan Adams is now the leading bigot in the South.
The Mississippi law that has Adams all wigged out protects the conscience and liberty rights of blacks (and whites) who serve as pastors, county clerks, heads of non-profits and adoption agencies, and who operate businesses as wedding vendors. Their right to freely exercise their religious convictions is what HB 1523 is all about.
Because this law protects the rights of blacks as well as whites, there are some striking implications for blacks in Mississippi, which is still regarded by many as a haven of racist bigotry.
Black pastors won’t be forced to perform same sex wedding ceremonies against their conscience just because a white man in government says they have to. Black churches won’t be forced to rent their houses of worship for same sex wedding ceremonies. Black county clerks won’t be forced to issue same sex wedding licenses that violate their conscience just because a white boss says she has to.
Blacks that run adoption agencies will be free to place adoptive children in a home with a mother and a father without fear of government discrimination at the hands of some white bureaucrat. Black fire chiefs like Kelvin Cochran won’t have to worry about getting fired in Mississippi for believing that marriage is the union of a man and a woman.
In other words, HB 1523 is a brilliantly conceived anti-discrimination bill. It does not foster discrimination, it prevents it. It is a world-class civil-rights bill of which Martin Luther King, Jr. would be justifiably proud. Anybody and everybody who is against invidious discrimination ought to love this law.
Mississippi can proudly take its place now as the leading civil rights state in the Union, providing more legal protections for people of faith and conscience than any other place in America.
But Adams is having none of it. He is evidently happy to drag Mississippi blacks back to the civil rights Stone Age of the 1960s in which their religious principles and rights of conscience had no legal protection, an era in which black pastors could be thrown in jail for standing for principles of liberty and equality.
Adams’ apparently believes that black pastors, clerks, non-profit leaders, and wedding vendors in Mississippi have no rights the white man is bound to respect.
And Bruce Springsteen is apparently eager to expose vulnerable young girls to sexual predators who, without the North Carolina bill, would be free to roam public bathrooms, fitness center locker rooms, and public swimming pool shower rooms at will.
So Springsteen is a sexist of the worst sort, and Bryan Adams is bigoted against people of faith, both black and white.
Let’s not miss this one last point. Both of these musicians claim they have done what they have done out of conscience. Springsteen said, “Some things are more important than a rock show,” and Adams said,“I cannot in good conscience” keep my April 14 concert commitment.
And so flushed with self-righteous indignation and in a high moral dudgeon, they seem spectacularly unaware of their own rank hypocrisy: they get to make business decisions based on conscience but nobody else does.
They preen about declining to use their artistic abilities on the grounds of conscience and high moral principle. But bakers and florists and photographers and adoption agencies are not allowed to do the same. In fact, Springsteen and Adams believe if other people make business decisions based on conscience like they do, the offenders should not be praised but punished to the full extent of the law.
Meet Bruce Springsteen and Bryan Adams: the biggest bullies, bigots and hypocrites on the block.