Ringo Starr Cancels North Carolina Concert Over Anti-LGBT Law, Cyndi Lauper Speaks Out

by Raphael Chestang 6:43 PM PDT, April 13, 2016
Photo: Getty Images

Ringo Starr is the latest musician to cancel a show in North Carolina in response to the state's passage of a controversial anti-LGBT law.

"I'm sorry to disappoint my fans in the area, but we need to take a stand against this hatred," Starr said in a statement on Wednesday. "Spread peace and love."

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The Beatles drummer was scheduled to perform at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary, North Carolina, on June 18.

The bill, also known as HB2, mandates that people in the state use public bathrooms or changing facilities based on the "biological sex" stated on their birth certificates, barring transgender citizens from using the bathroom that corresponds with their identifying gender. HB2 also tied the hands of local municipalities by barring them from creating laws which might prohibit discrimination in public places based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

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"How sad that they feel that this group of people cannot be defended," Starr continued.

Meanwhile, Cyndi Lauper, who has an upcoming concert in Raleigh, told ET that she plans to turn the show into an event "to build public support to repeal HB2."

"I will be donating all of the profits from the show to Equality North Carolina's efforts to repeal HB2, and I am proud of my manager and agent for joining me in this effort by donating their commissions from the show to this vital effort," she said in a statement. "I look forward to coming to North Carolina and standing up for equality and fairness. If we truly want an inclusive society, we all have to include ourselves in the effort to make that happen. This is the best way I know how to include myself and urge you to join me in the best way you know how."

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This comes after Bruce Springsteen announced last week that he was canceling an upcoming concert in North Carolina.

Joel McHale considered canceling his appearance in North Carolina as well, but instead used it as a platform to encourage change.

"What the f**k is wrong with your government here, guys?" McHale asked the audience at the Durham Performing Arts Center on Friday.

The Community star pledged to "donate every single dime I make tonight" to the LGBTQ Center of Durham.

Likewise, Bryan Adams spoke out against Mississippi's anti-LGBT Religious Liberty bill 1523 earlier this week, refusing to perform there unless the bill is repealed. Ellen DeGeneres also spoke out against the bill on her show, saying, "I'm not a political person. I'm really not, but this is not politics. This is human rights."

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The state's House Bill 1523 will take effect in July and allow businesses, individuals and religious organizations in Mississippi to deny service to LGBT individuals, single mothers and any others who offend their "sincerely held religious belief."

"That is the definition of discrimination," DeGeneres explained. "It is also something that the Supreme Court already ruled on when they made marriage a right for everyone."