Music Industry Heavyweights Sign Open Letter for Gun Control
As House Democrats participated in a 24-hour sit-in to try and force votes on gun control, Billboard magazine has spearheaded an open letter to U.S. Congress calling for an end to gun violence.
So far, nearly 200 artists and music executives have signed it in an act of support.
Musician Joan Jett was the first, followed by Lady Gaga. Over the next few days, they were joined by a vast array of big-name artists and industry leaders like Alicia Keys, Barbra Streisand, Beck, Billy Joel, Calvin Harris, Carole King, Diplo, Jennifer Lopez, John Mellencamp, Katy Perry, Kid Cudi, Macklemore, Michael Stipe, Sia , Selena Gomez, Stevie Nicks; CEOs like Spotify’s Daniel Elk and Big Machine’s Scott Borchetta and other industry managers and heavyweights such as L.A. Reid, Russell Simmons and Scooter Braun.
It’s not just American musicians who have joined the movement; British artists like Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and Radiohead’s Thom Yorke all signed, as well.
Here’s the Billboard letter in-full:
As leading artists and executives in the music industry, we are adding our voices to the chorus of Americans demanding change.
Music always has been celebrated communally, on dance floors and at concert halls. But this life-affirming ritual, like so many other daily experiences—going to school or church or work—now is threatened, because of gun violence in this country.
The one thing that connects the recent tragedies in Orlando is that it is far too easy for dangerous people to get their hands on guns.
We call on Congress to do more to prevent the gun violence that kills more than 90 Americans every day and injures hundreds more, including:
Require a background check for every gun sale
Block suspected terrorists from buying guns
Billboard and the undersigned implore you—the people who are elected to represent us—to close the deadly loopholes that put the lives of so many music fans, and all of us, at risk.
One more note: in the wake of Christina Grimmie’s murder, the Pulse nightclub mass-shooting and November’s terrorist attack at a Paris concert hall - music venues, clubs and artists are re-evaluating and upping security measures as the summer tour season begins.