Cirque du Soleil has joined a list of famous musicians and businesses boycotting North Carolina after politicians there passed a “bathroom bill” against transgender people and other citizens.
Cirque has canceled North Carolina stops for touring productions of “OVO” planned for this week and in July, plus “TORUK” (inspired by “Avatar”), which was slated for the state in June.
North Carolina legislators, backed financially by conservative religious groups, recently passed the “bathroom bill” HB2 during a one-day special session.
HB2 decrees transgender people who haven’t surgically changed their sex must use public restrooms that correlate with their birth gender.
There’s much more. HB2 ended certain LGBT protections in cities in the state. HB2 limits legal claims of discrimination based on “race, religion, color, national origin, biological sex and handicap,” according to the Charlotte Observer.
North Carolina lawmakers kept in place state laws that allow businesses to fire people for not being heterosexual. (And a side note: HB2 stops counties and cities in the state from raising the minimum wage.)
Ringo Starr, Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam and Bostonhave canceled upcoming North Carolina concerts. Conventions, swim meets and music festivals have been relocated to other sites, emptying thousands of North Carolina hotel room nights and costing the state $28 million in visitor spending and counting, according to the Raleigh News & Observer.
Cirque, which is not only LGBTQ-inclusive but is a commercial testament to multiculturalism, is not amused.
“The new HB2 legislation passed in North Carolina is an important regression to ensuring human rights for all,” Cirque announced in a statement.
“Cirque du Soleil believes in equality for all. It is a principle that guides us with both our employees and our customers. We behave as change agents to reach our ultimate goal of making a better world with our actions and our productions.”
HB2 is wreaking so much havoc on North Carolina, if HB2 had been a hurricane, the state could ask the federal government to declare a state of emergency. Alas, the cause of havoc is unpopular stupidity.
TV PREMIERE AT STRIP CLUB
You’re out of luck if you’re a man and you want to get your entire body painted at Skin City, the Las Vegas body painting business owned by reality TV judge Robin Slonina.
Skin City used to consider painting male clients in various states of undress, until a ridiculous man ruined it for everybody.
“We get some creepy people calling,” Slonina explains. “We had this one guy who kept calling, and every time he’d get someone different on the phone, he would pretend it was like the first time he called, and he wanted us to paint a ruler on his penis.”
So Slonina made a new rule. No painted penises.
This Wednesday, Slonina will host a third-season premiere party for Game Show Network’s “Skin Wars” in a party room, which holds hundreds, at Sapphire strip club.
The premiere party is set to feature 12 women painted in a “Garden of Paradise” theme. There’ll be a “living red carpet” (a model painted like a carpet while wearing a carpet), free temporary tats, and a free Snapz photo booth for pictures.
It’s open to the public, and free to enter if you arrive in your own car.
For the rest of the TV show’s third season, Skin City (body painting prices: $100-$750) will host viewing parties for each episode at the Hard Hat Lounge, across the street from Skin City, 1800 Industrial Road.
“I don’t even have cable myself,” Slonina says. “My husband, at one point, was like, ‘Now that you’re on TV, are we going to get TV?’ I was like, ‘Nah, we’ll just watch it at a bar.’”
NEW SHOWS ANNOUNCED
Enrique Iglesias will play Caesars Palace’s Colosseum Sept. 16-17. Tickets go on on sale for $40-$300 at 10 a.m. Friday though AXS.com and at Caesars.
Bryan Adams (who canceled a Mississippi concert to protest a “religious freedom” law that allows government and business discriminate against LGBTQ taxpayers) plays the Chelsea in The Cosmopolitan hotel on July 2-3. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday for $32-$57 via Ticketmaster and the hotel.
Doug Elfman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. He blogs at reviewjournal.com/elfman. On Twitter: @VegasAnonymous