Matt Healy (Pic: Ben Houdijk / Shutterstock.com)
Matt Healy, the lead singer of English band The 1975, has taken a stand against LGBTQ oppression by kissing a male fan at a concert in Dubai.
According to reports, Healy went into the crowd during the show on Wednesday and asked a man if he wanted a kiss. He went on to kiss the fan on the lips, eliciting cheers from the audience.
“I love you bro. We’re all human, right?” the 30-year old singer said as he walked back to the stage.
After the show, Healy tweeted: “Thank you Dubai you were so amazing. I don’t think we’ll be allowed back due to my ‘behaviour’ but know that I love you and I wouldn’t have done anything differently given the chance again.”
A video clip of the kiss which was posted online has since been deleted. Healy and the man could both have been arrested for showing any display of same-sex affection.
Homosexuality is illegal in the United Arab Emirates, which includes the emirates of Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Ras al-Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain, Ajman, Fujairah and Sharjah. Possible punishment includes imprisonment, fines, deportation, as well as hormone treatment and chemical castration.
In 2017, Jamie Harron, a 27-year-old electrician from Scotland, was arrested in Dubai after he walked through a crowded bar and briefly touched another man’s hip to avoid spilling his drink.
He was sentenced to three months in jail for “public indecency” but was later released by the ruler of Dubai following a wave of international outrage.
Healy’s actions will likely have encouraged the band’s LGBTQ fans around the world to be themselves. One tweeted, for example, that it had “inspired me to come out to my mum today.”
Last month, two members of German heavy metal band Rammstein showed their solidarity with Russia’s beleaguered LGBTQ community by kissing each other on stage at a concert in Moscow.