While several artists have canceled concerts in North Carolina in protest of the state’s new “religious freedom” law, Laura Jane Grace has announced that her band will perform a show in the state. The transgender Against Me! Frontwoman says her band’s show will take place as a protest of the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act (a.k.a. HB2).
“I’m going to create an event around the show as a form of protest to say that despite whatever stupid laws they enact, trans people are not going to be scared. They are not going to go away,” Grace tells Buzzfeed. “I think the real danger with HB2 is that it creates a target on transgender people specifically. When you feel targeted as a trans person, the natural inclination is to go into hiding. But visibility is more important than ever; to go there and have the platform of a stage to stand on and speak your mind and represent yourself.”
“Bryan Adams and Bruce Springsteen aren’t transgender,” Grace says of some of the musicians who have canceled shows in response to the new law. “For them to say, ‘I think this bill is messed up and I’m not going to go here and be part of the state,’ that seems like the effort of an ally, which is really commendable.” But, she explains, Against Me! canceling a show wouldn’t make as big of an impact, and she wants to express solidarity with the trans individuals who live in North Carolina. “They live here. They pay taxes. They are prisoners to it.”
Against Me!’s concert will take place on May 15th in Durham.