Within recent weeks, some proposed pieces of legislation in Texas has generated a lot of buzz. Texas lawmakers introduced Texas Senate Bill 6 and Texas House Bill 1362 in January. If the two bills are passed, all individuals will have to use the bathroom that matches the sex on their birth certificate as opposed to the sex they align with their gender identity.
Once news of the bills’ introduction became known, opponents to it spoke out with their concerns. In an open letter published to TXTogether.org, opponents referred to the bills as “poison, a barrier between Texas and its future,” and argued that they discriminate toward the transgender and LGBTQ communities in the state.
The letter goes on to read:
“Transgender and gender non-conforming young people are already subject to bullying and harassment. Can you imagine the message these bills send to children…how much more can you punish them for living honestly and openly?”
The letter was put together and signed by dozens of celebrities. While not all of the celebrities have ties to Texas, they all wish to express their concerns over the two proposed “bathroom bills.”
“Please know that the creative community is watching Texas, with love for all of its people and for its contributions to music, art and culture,” the letter reads.
One native Texan who signed the letter was Natalie Maines, the lead singer of the Dixie Chicks. Maines has been a vocal supporter of the LGBTQ community in the past, and is also a strong advocate for diversity.
Maines wasn’t the only celebrity in the country music community to sign the letter opposing the bills. Connie Britton, who plays Rayna James on the CMT series Nashville, also placed her signature on the letter.
Other celebrities who added their names to the letter include Cyndi Lauper, Sting, Britney Spears, and Alicia Keys.
This isn’t the first time that celebrities have spoken out against such a bill. In Summer 2016, several music stars cancelled their concerts in North Carolina after the state passed a law similar to the bills proposed in Texas. However, some artists continued to move forward with their performances as scheduled, including Dolly Parton. Parton spoke to Fox 8 News about the law and her decision not to cancel her concert scheduled in Greensboro:
“I think everybody should be treated with respect. I don’t judge people. I try not to get too caught up in the controversy of things. I hope that everybody gets a chance to be who and what they are. I just know if I have to pee, I’m going to pee, I don’t care where it’s going to be.“
If the bills are passed in Texas, it seems likely that some artists may cancel their concerts in the state, just like they did when North Carolina passed its law. What do you think about this whole situation?