The violinist Itzhak Perlman is the latest musician to cancel a scheduled performance in North Carolina to protest its abhorrent bathroom laws that discriminate against the transgender community.
He issued a statement saying:
As my fans know, I have spent a lifetime advocating against discrimination towards those with physical disabilities and have been a vocal advocate for treating all people equally. As such, after great consideration, I have decided to cancel my May 18th concert in North Carolina with the North Carolina Symphony as a stand against House Bill 2. As Attorney General Loretta Lynch recently stated, HB2 “is about a great deal more than just bathrooms. [It] is about the dignity and respect we accord our fellow citizens.” I couldn’t agree more and will look forward to returning to North Carolina when this discriminatory law is repealed.
Perlman joins Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam, Ringo Starr, and Jimmy Buffett among others and you can be sure that the numbers will grow. They join the businesses and convention groups that are pulling out. I wonder how long North Carolina will be able to resist the pressure.
Perlman has long been an advocate for the disabled and I recall this clip from a long time ago from Sesame Street where he made it a point to make the viewing children aware of his disability, to show that it was nothing to be ashamed or embarrassed about.
Perlman enjoys playing a wide range of musical styles. One of my favorite CDs consists of him and pianist Andre Previn playing Scott Joplin compositions. Here they are on The Easy Winners.
Now that my children are grown, it’s been a long time since I watched Sesame Street but was curious as to whether they had included a transgender character or a same-sex couple (and I am leaving out the long standing discussion of whether Bert and Ernie were such a couple). Anyone know?