Back in the 1980s, Bruce Springsteen and other rock stars formed Artists United Against Apartheid and performed a song proclaiming "Sun City" that referenced an entertainment resort in a region of South Africa. The song mocked the Reagan administration's constructive engagement policy to end apartheid. And rock stars also routinely performed in the totalitarian Soviet Union, believing that was incredibly constructive.
One wonders: Will these people ever stop complaining? Today, Springsteen and other so-called artists of conscience have a burning desire to affront a new injustice: transgender people who aren't allowed to celebrate their chosen identity in the opposite sex's bathroom. The state legislature of North Carolina attempted to retain the silly old notion that "single-sex, multiple-occupancy bathroom and changing facilities" should be entered based on a person's biological gender, not what the one they imagine it to be. People on the left have gone berserk.
The most excitable cultural leftists at exotic publications like The New York Times argue that the rarest of rare exemplars of gender confusion having the liberty to use the wrong restroom is a human right on par with those who suffered lynching or racial segregation. This epidemic of "discrimination" -- making those assigned a penis at birth use the men's room --is apparently everywhere. Outside the most liberal cities, it is supported by a large number of Americans.
On this issue, Springsteen is at his most ridiculous: "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. ... 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."
Go to Dallas or Pittsburgh or Memphis or Detroit and read that quote to people. They will burst out laughing. But go to New York City and watch some saddle up their horses.
The media in Manhattan are lionizing Springsteen for being a gender identity guerrilla. ABC's sappy Steve Osunsami reported: "Bruce Springsteen, the rock legend who honors veterans and stands up for heroes, is refunding concert tickets today in protest of the new North Carolina law that rolls back protections for gay families and stops transgender residents from using the bathrooms they need." They can't go to the bathroom without Bruce? News writers have called it a "transgender bathroom ban," as if the gender-confused are banned from restrooms altogether.
Springsteen's not alone. This past Sunday, 80s rock star Bryan Adams canceled a show in Biloxi, Miss., due to the state's new religious freedom legislation. The hypocrisy is delicious. It was quickly revealed that Adams performed in Egypt just last month. And he toured other predominantly Muslim destinations in 2010, including Damascus, Doha, Dubai, and Beirut. We're pretty certain those sites don't have transgender bathrooms either.
The cultural left won one battle -- like the imposition of gay marriage on all 50 states -- and now it's using every liberal instrument of corporate and celebrity power to suppress any pocket of resistance to the next new sexual extreme, especially in states that most cherish traditional religious values. "Freedom fighters" is the last label they deserve.