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“Right to Rock Act” Aims to Protect Musicians from Getting Canceled for Social, Political Views

At a recent town hall meeting, the lawmaker who filed the bill whipped out a guitar and performed a 17-song setlist of KISS, AC/DC and Led Zeppelin classics.

NAVARRE, FLORIDA — A Panhandle-based Florida lawmaker wants to keep the cancel culture mob from calling off concerts at public venues.

Rep. Joel Rudman (R-Navarre) filed the “Right to Rock Act” late last month with the goal of protecting musicians and other entertainers from having their shows canceled due to their social and political views.

HB 15 states any entertainment venues that accept taxpayer dollars from the state “may not cancel or terminate an executed contract” with “musicians, comedians, dancers, and actors… for any reason related to the person's use of social media or political affiliation.” The prohibition only applies if the performer has signed a contract with the venue.

Navarre is a medical doctor who was elected in November to represent District 3 in the Florida House of Representatives. He pushed back on mask mandates and other COVID-related restrictions in 2020 and 2021, taking blows from mainstream media in the process. Rudman also plays the guitar and is a fan of classic rock.

“Earlier this month [Rudman] invited constituents to a rock’n’roll town hall meeting,” an article in the Tallahassee Democrat noted. “After an hour-long question and answer session on Florida politics he whipped out a guitar and performed a 17-song setlist of KISS, AC/DC and Led Zeppelin classics.”

In May, LGBTQ activists successfully pressured a venue in Birmingham, Alabama to cancel its Ted Nugent concert due to the rock star’s critical view of the concept of gender-fluidity. Rudman’s district is near the Alabama state line.

“There is no such thing as transgender,” Nugent tweeted in April. “You cannot change your gender. Comfortably numb is actually uncomfortably dumb. Debate me but bring your bib.”

Two weeks before filing the “Right to Rock Act,” Rudman suggested members of the Santa Rosa Democrat Party were trying to sabotage his tour.

“When I announced my concert tour, I used Eventbrite to process free tickets so I could get a rough headcount for each gig,” he wrote on Facebook. “The woke mob liberals flooded the system with fake emails and bogus names, so now we have no way of knowing how many to expect.”

The Santa Rosa Democrats denied any involvement.

“Dude we didn’t even know about your tour until we saw this post,” the organization replied. “If you’re experiencing Eventbrite issues it has nothing to do with us. You’re not that important. Our job is to expose what little you do for our county, we could care less about your guitar career.”