US rapper Macklemore promises to 'go harder' after attempt to ban 'gay anthem' at NRL final

Published: 28 September 2017 Image credit: Reuters

macklemore

US rap artist Macklemore has hit back at calls to ban him from performing at the NRL Grand Final, calling his critics “angry white dudes.”

Speaking to US radio station Power 106, the Grammy-award-winning artist said he would push back against attempts to stop the performance of his song Same Love, which is about same-sex marriage.

“It’s interesting actually, because I’m playing Same Love, and they’re going through right now trying to legalise same-sex marriage in Australia,” he told Power 106.

“So I’m getting a lot of tweets from angry old white men in Australia who I think there was a petition today to ban me from playing it.”

“It’s interesting times in Australia. Imma go harder,” he said.

The song Same Love was recorded in 2012, during the campaign to legalise same-sex marriage in Washington State.

It topped the charts in Australia in 2013.

Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott had led the chorus of critics on Twitter, writing, “Footy fans shouldn’t be subjected to a politicised grand final. Sport is sport!”

Former NRL player Tony Wall began a petition to NRL boss Todd Greenburg, demanding the removal of “LGBTIQ politics out of the NRL.”

“It will be very difficult to watch the NRL Grand Final with my wife and five young children as the event will be heavily politicised with a LGBTIQ anthem taking centre stage,” Mr Wall writes.

But Attorney General George Brandis has thrown his support behind the NRL and Macklemore, challenging Mr Abbott’s commitment to freedom of speech.

brandis

Attorney-General George Brandis

“This particular song is one of four songs, I believe, that Macklemore is singing… it is one of his most popular songs, and for Mr Abbott or anyone else to say that it should be banned I think is a bizarre thing to say,” he told ABC TV.

“I thought Mr Abbott believed in freedom of speech.”

The NRL stood by its commitment to host Macklemore as part of the Grand Final entertainment.

“We’re an inclusive game and whilst everyone will stand for their own issues and make their own decisions, we’re very comfortable with where we sit,” he told 2GB Radio.

“We’ve made our position pretty clear – I don’t expect everyone to agree on that.”