Against Me!’s Laura Jane Grace Burns Birth Certificate At North Carolina Show

Back in April Against Me!’s Laura Jane Grace said her band would still play their scheduled show in North Carolina with the proceeds going to charity, despite many other acts cancelling shows in the wake of their anti-LGBT Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act. The Act is a law enforcing the use of bathrooms that designated to a person’s “biological gender”, that is, the gender stated on your birth certificate.

Grace instead responded by burning her own birth certificate on stage.

Watch the evidence below, thanks to Twitter.

“You know, there’s been a lot of focus on just the bathroom part of HB2, but one of the other huge parts is that it takes away a transgender person’s right to sue for discrimination on the state level and that is huge. I mean, if someone else has the right to sue for discrimination and I don’t, how that is constitutional?” she asked in an interview with Buzzfeed.

There has been a lot of criticism since these laws were passed in March. Many other artists, including Bruce Springsteen have cancelled their shows, while others have chosen to perform – but will donate proceeds to relevant organisations and charities. “Bruce Springsteen pulling out of a concert has a noticeable financial effect. That’s lost revenue for the city. No one will notice that much if I cancel the show; it only hurts the fans and the people who have already bought tickets, and the people who could possibly be educated in a situation like that,” she said.

Grace has stood up for transgender rights many times previously, notably performing a song with Miley Cyrus to help launch the Happy Hippy Foundation. Despite organisations like this, however, there has still been a huge amount of prejudice and violence behaviour towards transgender people. Last year we spoke to Stephanie McCarthy, a transgender musician who was attacked in Newtown, about her ordeal and the influence people like Grace have had on her. She offered some advice to others who may be going through the same issue.

“To other trans/queer folks suffering abuse, discrimination and violence, I say to stay strong. Being out there and visible is how attitudes change,” McCarthy said.

Image: Stereogum