Rihanna, Justin Timberlake + More Join Stevie Wonder in Florida Boycott
Stevie Wonder is boycotting performing in Florida due to the state’s Stand Your Ground law regarding personal protection. The law allows an individual to resort to the use of deadly force if they feel that their life or their safety is threatened.
A source close to the soul singer said that the aforementioned acts have joined him in refusing to perform in Florida, after former neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman was acquitted despite shooting and killing Trayvon Martin, 17. The boy was unarmed and wearing a hoodie when he and Zimmerman engaged in a fatal altercation.
Wonder, 63, declared at a Canadian concert that he would steer clear of Florida, proclaiming, “I decided today that until the Stand Your Ground law is abolished in Florida, I will never perform there again. As a matter of fact, wherever I find that law exists, I will not perform in that state or in that part of the world.”
He continued, “The truth is that — for those of you who’ve lost in the battle for justice, wherever that fits in any part of the world — we can’t bring them back. What we can do is we can let our voices be heard. And we can vote in our various countries throughout the world for change and equality for everybody. That’s what I know we can do.”
There are several other states that have adopted some form of the Stand Your Ground law, including California, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania, so that’s another batch of states that won’t enjoy the music of Wonder while those laws are active.
UPDATE: Justin Timberlake, Jay-Z and others have since denied involvement with the boycott.