The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) are tackling Morrissey head on, and are calling for a boycott of the performer’s upcoming concert at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland, which is scheduled for tomorrow. This call to action is in response to many of the singer’s recent controversies, which include his support for the For Britain Party, claims that Halal certifiers were “ISIS Supporters,” and claims that people of Chinese descent are “subspecies,” due to their perceived mistreatment of animals.
“Under the circumstances, attending Morrissey’s concert is a form of financial support and, in effect, an endorsement of his bigotry,” Zainab Chaudry, CAIR’s Director of Maryland Outreach, stated in an email to The Baltimore Sun. “Therefore, CAIR is calling on fans to boycott the event to protest his racist, hate-filled views and to send a strong message that we expect better from him.”
While Morrissey’s actions have caused controversy going back to the early 1990s, recent incidents, such as his performance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon;where he performed wearing a pin in support of the For Britain political party, have attracted further controversy. For Britain was founded by self-described “anti-Islam” activist Anne Marie Waters, who publicly thanked the singer after the performance.
This isn’t the first incident that has encouraged boycotts, earlier this year his music was banned from the world’s oldest record store in response to his recent comments. Despite these calls for a boycott, the performer is still touring with Interpol this year.
“I do not condone or validate any derogatory actions or comments of any [entertainer playing Merriweather Post Pavilion],” Calvin Ball, the County Executive for Howard County, where the venue is located wrote in an email. “It is my hope that any conversation we have around hateful speech produces an understanding of the damage it can cause and leads us to a place of greater unity, and a better tomorrow for all.”