Rep urges boycott of Colorado over bias law

Music biz publicist Phil Lobel is urging people in the entertainment industry to cancel their Colorado ski plans to protest the state’s passage of Amendment 2 . The amendment, which was voted into law Nov. 3, rescinds previous anti-discrimination measures, and facilitates discrimination against lesbians and gays in the state.

Lobel, who has repped such acts as George Michael, B.B. King and Steel Pulse, has formed Coloradans & Californians for Fairness in the Nation (COFFIN). A Colorado native, Lobel now lives in Los Angeles. He has assembled an executive committee for COFFIN that includes producer Howard Rosenman, Tom Oxner of Radiovision, manager Rob Kahane and Dr. Carole Lieberman.

Santa Monica ad agency Brooks-Gruman will handle COFFIN’s campaign on a pro-bono basis. Tagline of first print ads is “Bury the Politics of Hate.” Future ads are expected to feature celebrity support. The goal of the campaign is the repeal of Amendment 2.

An initial phase of the campaign is a boycott by the entertainment industry of Colorado ski resorts. “How can Hollywood go play in Colorado now that the state has turned its back on basic human rights?” Lobel said.

Denver concert promoter Barry Fey has endorsed COFFIN’s goal and said he plans to work for the repeal of Amendment 2, though he stopped short of endorsing a boycott (Daily Variety, Nov. 5).

Separately, the National Education Association’s largest affiliate, United Teachers–Los Angeles, has announced its support of a general boycott of Colorado because of the passage of Amendment 2.

Some in the lesbian and gay community are opposed to the boycott, with one community leader asserting that gays who live in Colorado may suffer if a national boycott is launched. He further argued that a greater gay presence–not a boycott–is needed in the state to reverse public opinion there.

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