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Bruce Springsteen cancels North Carolina concert; congressman calls it a 'bully tactic'

"Some things are more important than a rock show and this fight against prejudice and bigotry -- which is happening as I write -- is one of them," Springsteen says.

By
Karen Butler
Bruce Springsteen performs during the Concert for Valor on the National Mall on Veteran's Day, November 11, 2014, in Washington, D.C. File photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI
Bruce Springsteen performs during the Concert for Valor on the National Mall on Veteran's Day, November 11, 2014, in Washington, D.C. File photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

GREENSBORO, N.C., April 10 (UPI) -- Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band have canceled Sunday's planned show in Greensboro, N.C., to protest the state's passing of the HB2 Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act, which specifies the bathrooms transgender people are permitted to use.

"Just as important, the law also attacks the rights of LGBT citizens to sue when their human rights are violated in the workplace," Springsteen noted in a statement on the band's website.

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"No other group of North Carolinians faces such a burden. To my mind, it's an attempt by people who cannot stand the progress our country has made in recognizing the human rights of all of our citizens to overturn that progress," the message continued. "Right now, there are many groups, businesses, and individuals in North Carolina working to oppose and overcome these negative developments. Taking all of this into account, I feel that this is a time for me and the band to show solidarity for those freedom fighters. As a result, and with deepest apologies to our dedicated fans in Greensboro, we have canceled our show scheduled for Sunday, April 10. Some things are more important than a rock show and this fight against prejudice and bigotry -- which is happening as I write -- is one of them. It is the strongest means I have for raising my voice in opposition to those who continue to push us backwards instead of forwards."

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"It's disappointing he's not following through on his commitments," Mark Walker, a Republican freshman congressman, told The Hollywood Reporter.

"We've got other artists coming soon -- Def Leppard, Justin Bieber," Walker said. "I've never been a Bieber fan, but I might have to go. Maybe artists who weren't 'born to run' deserve a little bit more support. ... Bruce is known to be on the radical left, and he's got every right to be so, but I consider this a bully tactic. It's like when a kid gets upset and says he's going to take his ball and go home."

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