Homophobic reggae star Beenie Man

Following protests by gay rights groups, concerts by reggae star Beenie Man, planned for Australia and New Zealand in January, have been cancelled.

Tour organisers were lobbied to axe the concert dates by the Australian Coalition for Equality as well as Peter Tatchell of OutRage!, acting on behalf of the international Stop Murder Music campaign.

“Beenie Man is one of Jamaica’s leading reggae stars. He has had hit tunes which incite the murder of lesbians and gay men. It is a tragedy that he has not used his undoubted musical talent to promote the true reggae message of justice, harmony, peace and love,” said Tatchell in a statement.

“These concert cancellations will hit Beenie Man hard in the pocket. He has lost tens of thousands of dollars. The success of this campaign sends a warning message to all murder music artists: inciting homophobic violence will cost you money. You will lose out big time,” added Tatchell.

Beenie Man had been scheduled to perform in January 2010 at Big Day Out concerts in the Australian cities of Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth and in the New Zealand city of Auckland. The organisers have now confirmed that he will not be in the concert line-up.

Beenie Man’s song lyrics are unabashedly homophobic. In his hit tune Damn, he sings: “I’m dreaming of a new Jamaica, come to execute all the queers.” Another of his popular recordings, Bad Man Chi Chi Man (Bad Man Queer Man), instructs listeners to kill gay DJs and boasts that people would gladly go to jail for killing a queer.

Chi Chi Man is an offensive Jamaican patois homophobic slang insult, equivalent to the insulting words queer, poof and faggot.

“Beenie Man has refused to apologise and he continues to perform and defend his songs encouraging the murder of lesbians and gays. His concerts should be cancelled. Beenie Man should be arrested, not feted,” said the Jamaican gay rights movement, J-Flag.

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