The man who runs Coachella‘s parent company AEG has been accused of donating funds to groups who take a strong stance against LGBTQ and climate change issues.
Earlier this week, the Coachella 2017 line-up was revealed – boasting Radiohead, Kendrick Lamar and Beyonce as headliners alongside the likes of The xx, Father John Misty, Travis Scott, Lorde, Mac DeMarco and many more. In the wake of the news, it has been reported that the owner of Coachella’s parent company Philip Anschutz has been a prolific donor to some highly controversial causes.
AEG also owns several sports teams and venues. Now, as the Washington Post reveals, Anschutz has actively funded the Alliance Defending Freedom, the Family Research Council, and the National Christian Foundation – three groups known to lobby and campaign against LGBTQ rights. Many of the policies listed on the Family Research Council’s website have been viewed as anti-gay rights, anti-transgender rights, and anti-abortion.
“Phil Anschutz’s extensive influence in Colorado politics has been known for years, but the degree of his support for anti-LGBTQ groups that fund extremist hate groups like Gordon Kligenschmitt’s ‘Pray in Jesus Name’ is shocking,” said ProgressNow Colorado executive director Ian Silverii in a statement. “At a time in American history when discrimination and violence against LGBTQ citizens is on the rise, support for pro-discrimination groups puts Anschutz on the wrong side of Colorado, and on the wrong side of history.”
Meanwhile, Greenpeace have previously described him as a “financier of climate science denial groups.”
Anschutz, Coachella and AEG are yet to respond to the reports.
Fans have since taken to Twitter to voice their disgust at the news:
good thing i made that anti-lqbt story up about Coachella so i can drive the hipsters out and the ticket prices down. don't wanna miss Bey
— Amy Harber/Earth-1 Supergirl ????? (@AmyHarber) January 5, 2017
Never been to Coachella, but was planning on going this year…
— Adrian C. Jackson (@AdrianCJax) January 5, 2017
Coachella: not even once. be aware of the money and people behind big money shows. https://t.co/xFYK9KIe0G
— Gabriel Armstrong (@mymagicfinger) January 5, 2017
Now we wait for Beyoncé's response to the owner of Coachella being anti LGBT. ?️?
— Oh Johnny Boy (@TheHybridGay) January 5, 2017
Coachella 2017 will be held on two weekends: April 14-16 and April 21-23 2017. The festival takes place at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California. Check out everything we know about the festival here.