LIFEbeat – The Music Industry Fights AIDS, has collectively decided to cancel its Reggae Gold Live concert, scheduled for Tuesday, July 18 at New York’s Webster Hall. While the organization’s staff and board believe very strongly in the positive purpose and intention of this event, the possibility of violence at the concert from the firestorm incited by a select group of activists makes canceling the event the only responsible action. Dialogue is important and LIFEbeat’s staff and board respect the opinions of those who came forward to make their feelings known. We have always and will continue to support the GLBT community.
It is very unfortunate, however, that the intended good that could result from bringing this community together around this potentially ground breaking event will not be realized. The Caribbean American community needs our help in bringing attention to this unspoken and often stigmatized illness. We hope in the wake of this decision that those who came forward and spoke out will now come forward again to do something positive for the Caribbean American community and help bring attention to the devastation this disease has wreaked in that community so awareness, prevention and healing can follow.
If you ask me, I think it’s a bit of a cop-out.
Good grief. It’s our fault for spoiling their party with the gay bashers. LIFEbeat is still running away from dialogue. They didn’t have to cancel the concert as far as I’m concerned. It would have been enough to use their influence to get the artists to repudiate their violently anti-gay lyrics, etc. LIFEbeat couldn’t or wouldn’t even do that.
They are still running away from dialogue. Running away and pointing the finger back at us.LIFEbeat has basically chosen to cut and run, and blame us for daring to question their ill-considered decision to use these artists in the first place. They talk about dialogue, but they are still running away from dialogue. They deflected even a modest request that they use their influence to get these artists to repudiate their violently anti-gay lyrics. They couldn’t or wouldn’t do even that much. They are still running away from dialogue
I can’t even begin to address their suggestion that we were somehow threatening or advocating violence when our entire protest has been in response to their artists advocating violence against us.
If they are sincere about their statement, they will turn this around and produce a concert that doesn’t promote artists like Beanie Man and TOK, and they will give the proceeds to Carribean organizations like J-FLAG, that are fighting HIV/AIDS and homophobia.
As it stands now, LIFEbeat has yet to lead, and has yet to live up to its name.