We won’t have nice things in a theocracy. Even one that claims to be “secular.”
Lady Gaga has canceled her June 3 concert in Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nation, which calls itself secular, after the hardline fundamentalists Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) threatened violence and “chaos” if she entered the country, calling Gaga a “devil’s messenger.”
The FPI stated they would try to prevent the performer from exiting her plane when it landed, complaining that Gaga performed in “a bra and panties.”
Minola Sebayang, lawyer for promoters Big Daddy, told reporters:
This is not only about Lady Gaga’s security, but extends to those who will be watching her.
While the police in Jakarta refused to issue a permit for the concert, Big Daddy president Michael Rusli said:
For the past few days we have communicated with the government and Lady Gaga’s side. The government has given support, but this is not about the permit. The cancellation is really due to concerns over security.
It’s been reported that promoters were trying to work within government guidelines for decency — Beyonce and the Pussycat Dolls were allowed to perform their Indonesian shows in modest stage costumes. But while Rusili said that Gaga was “prepared to adapt to Asian culture,” her manager Troy Carter said the star “would not tone down any of her concerts.”
In the past months, Lady Gaga has faced protests from Christian groups at her shows in the Philippines and South Korea, and in the latter country made her shows 18 and over, but refused to compromise her concerts’ content or the integrity of her vision.
Promoters are offering refunds for the 50,000 tickets sold for the concert.
Again, this is why we won’t have nice things in a theocracy. Like Pride tee-shirts. Or certain books. Or more importantly, the freedom to worship, love or do as we please. Because, even though Indonesia is a technically a secular country, 90% of population identifies as Muslim, and some of that 90% is so empowered by being in the majority that they’ve become threatening bullies. Kinda like some Christians here in the US, where 78% of the population identifies as Christian some of whom murder in the name of their faith, which is why it is important that all of us continue to support and maintain the separation of church and state, and refute the establishment of any theocracy, and work to insure that any government favoritism of any faith, by any government arm, even the IRS, is stopped.