Bandcamp Comes Out Against Trump’s Muslim Ban

As tours get cancelled, immigrants get detained at airports, and confusion rages on around the country about what the hell is going on after President Trump’s Executive Order banning immigrants from 7 Muslim-majority nations, companies are starting to take public stances.

Starbucks has said it will hire 10,000 refugees in 70 countries (not just America – calm down) over the next five years.  Lyft is donating $1M to the ACLU.  Uber turned off surge pricing during the NYC taxi protest which made it seem like the company was attempting to capitalize on the protest sparking the #DeleteUber movement (Uber clarified that they are very much opposed to the ban and have taken steps to help affected drivers. Worth mentioning that Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is on Trump’s business advisory council).

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook and Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg have also come out with statements condemning the executive order.

And now, the direct-to-fan, artist managed music platform, Bandcamp has taken a stance as well.  Bandcamp founder and CEO Ethan Diamond sent an email to every Bandcamp user late Tuesday afternoon expressing contempt for the executive order.

Diamond states that this Friday, 100% of Bandcamp’s share of the proceeds of any purchase will go directly to the ACLU.

He writes:

Like 98% of U.S. citizens (including the President), I am the descendant of immigrants—my great-grandparents came to America from Russia and Lithuania as teenagers and worked in sweatshops until they were able to afford to bring the rest of their families over.  Most everyone you speak to in this country has a similar story to tell, because we are, in fact, a nation of immigrants, bound together by a shared belief in justice, equality, and the freedom to pursue a better life.  In this context, last week’s Executive Order barring immigrants and refugees from seven Middle Eastern countries from entering the United States is not simply immoral, it violates the very spirit and foundation of America.

Contrary to the assertions of the current administration, the order will not make us safer (an opinion shared by the State Department and many members of Congress including prominent Republicans).  Christian religious leaders have denounced both the ban, as well as the exception prioritizing Christian immigrants, as inhumane.

It is an unequivocal moral wrong, a cynical attempt to sow division among the American people, and is in direct opposition to the principles of a country where the tenet of religious freedom is written directly into the Constitution.

This is not who we are, and it is not what we believe in.  We at Bandcamp oppose the ban wholeheartedly, and extend our support to those whose lives have been upended.

And so all day this Friday, February 3rd (starting at 12:01am Pacific Time), for any purchase you make on Bandcamp, we will be donating 100% of our share of the proceeds to the American Civil Liberties Union, who are working tirelessly to combat these discriminatory and unconstitutional actions.

As another way of showing solidarity with the immigrants and refugees from the seven banned countries — as well as those impacted by the construction of the Mexican border wall — we’ve compiled a list of albums made by artists from the affected countries (Bandcamp may be incorporated in the United States, but we host artists from every corner of the world).  We believe that knowledge and empathy are crucial weapons against fear and intolerance.  We hope that, as you listen to these albums, you’ll not only discover some great new artists, but will also gain a further appreciation and understanding for the way music transcends all borders, and remember that, even in the darkest of times, there is more that unites us than divides us.

Bandcamp is one of the largest direct-to fan music platforms in the world and fans have paid artists nearly $200 million by using the platform ($5.2 million in the past 30 days). 

One thing is certain, standing idly by while our fellow humans’ rights get violated in the name of America is not acceptable to some of the country’s biggest companies, most respected musicians and now, music platforms.

This Muslim ban is everything America is not.

I, along with millions of other Americans, will not stand for this blatant attack on marginalized groups of people. America used to be the place where immigrants could find refuge. Steve Jobs’s father was a Syrian immigrant. Had we banned him, America wouldn’t have Apple.

Immigrants have founded 51% of US billion-dollar startups.  President Trump’s self-serving power grab (the countries on the list, of course, do not include those his family does business with like Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia or United Arab Emirates) may have gotten him elected, but if he wants to prove to the American people (and the world) that he has taken on the honor of President of the United States to actually help the American people and lead the free world, he’s got some serious work to do to turn things around.  His first couple weeks have gotten off to quite the rocky start.

 

Ari Herstand is a Los Angeles based singer/songwriter and the creator of the music biz advice blog Ari’s Take. Follow him on Twitter: @aristake.

18 Responses

    • Avatar
      Don't Be a Hypocrite

      Facebook and Apple are also against the ban. Better stop using Facebook and you should probably throw out your iPhone and MacBook.

    • Avatar
      W Lotik

      Zzzz…posting an inaccurate video doesn’t state your position very well. People (you) rely too much on other people putting together “their” facts to make “their” case. Do your own research and come to a conclusion. This video was pathetic.

      • Avatar
        TRUMP is your daddy

        The video states it clearly: this temporary policy is a valid security issue and not a Muslim Ban otherwise they would be banning Muslims wholesale, now wouldn’t they? Muslims are also from countries not named. Second point is that Liberals are either ignorant or hypocritical as to the DNC creating and using these type of laws in the first place. Which one would you guess it be?

        Inaccurate? Yeah right, because you say so? Nice try.

        Liberal Imagination: Bigot charge, Popular Vote nonsense, Russian Conspiracy, Muslim Ban.

        What’s next Liberal? UFO’s, Hollow Earth People.

        Now Bandcamp made a faux pas in politicizing their business. Kind of petty now isn’t it?

  1. Avatar
    Graaf Orlok

    As someone who has been using Bandcamp for years, I find their stance disappointing. It’s a music store. I don’t care what they do with their cut, whether they spend it on coke and hookers or give it to the ACLU, but I don’t think they should be making political statements.

    • Avatar
      Paul Resnikoff

      I tend to agree with this. I think musicians, music stores, etc., get themselves into trouble when they wade into political waters. Of course, anyone has the freedom to support whichever side they want.

      That said, I don’t think Bandcamp would have done this if a vast majority or their artists didn’t agree. In fact, they may increase their customer loyalty and sales with this move.

      • Avatar
        Thanx Sandi

        Getting political in any business is always bad business.

  2. Avatar
    ROFL !

    Talk about the blind leading the blind – it is not a “Muslim Ban” ….

    People are in such a hurry to run around screaming in protest you don’t even bother to gather the facts.

    PS – Trump is doing exactly what he promised he’d do – hissy fits ain’t gonna help ya’ll.

    • Avatar
      Don't Be a Hypocrite

      “Trump asked me how to do a Muslim ban legally.” – Rudy Giuliani

      Take your issue up with one of Trump’s closest advisors. He said it on Fox News. There’s video footage of it. Nearly every publication in the country has written about it. Even the Independent out of the UK. What rock are you hiding under?

      The Executive Order makes exceptions for “persecuted religious minorities” ala Christians since these are all Muslim majority nations. Making this a ban only affecting Muslims.

      You’re damn right he promised to do that on the campaign. And that’s one of the reasons why he lost the popular vote by 3 million votes. The majority of the public does not support him. So the majority is standing up stating so.

      • Avatar
        Tony D

        Except Trump didn’t ban the 203 million Muslims in Indonesia or the 170 million Muslims in India, and so on and so forth.

        Go suck Stephen Colbert’s cock some more, loser. Fuck you.

        • Avatar
          Rick Shaw

          No, Trump didn’t ban any countries that any of his companies do business in. Curious since some of the known terrorists come from a few of those countries. Well? Well? Crickets…I thought so.

  3. Avatar
    WineCyclist

    After the FBI disrupted a plot in 2011 by Iraqi nationals in KY, then President Obama suspended visas for Iraqi refugees including translators for six months. Refuge admissions were also halted after 9/11. In 2015, after the San Bernardino rampage, President Obama signed legislation that excluded from the U.S. visa waiver program citizens of Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Libya and Iran who had visited those countries after March 2011. I do not recall reading a single word from DMN or a single peep out of any of the recording artists protesting these actions by President Obama. Hypocrisy awash in its own drivel.

  4. Avatar
    PiratesWinLOL

    i wonder when the regressive propaganda press start discussing the problems regarding the fact, that a large number of islamic countries, ban jews from entering their countries. or perhaps they won’t. perhaps it doesn’t help their rotten leftist agenda. fact is that trump is saving the united states from a lot of terrorism and crime. he would be an idiot repeating the mistakes of europe, allowing large numbers of muslim rapefugees to pollute the country.

  5. Avatar
    Cristian

    Excellent. I’ll be buying a couple of albums from them on Friday for sure.

    • Avatar
      TRUMP is your daddy

      And that is your right here in America. Perhaps not so much freedom in certain Muslim majority countries. Be sure that your music purchases don’t conflict with Islamic values.

  6. Avatar
    Tony D

    Ari Herstand has obviously not read the Executive Order if he thinks it’s a “Muslim ban”. Neither has Ethan Diamond.

    I don’t care if Bandcamp donates a day’s profits to the ACLU. Maybe they need a tax writeoff. Go ahead and keep virtue signaling. It won’t make any difference.

    Just think if we would have elected Hillary. She’d probably have done the same thing as Trump while ordering bombing campaigns in Syria and Yemen that would have killed civilians, women, and children. And you sheep hypocrite libtards would have cheered her on.

    The Left is the USA are insane. Acting like a bunch of toddlers shitting their pants because mommy wouldn’t buy them a toy.

    • Avatar
      Thanx Sandi

      Tony,

      It is a Left-Wing logical fallacy and just a mean spirited game on the left. An Arab did the exact same thing as Trump:

      http://www.albawaba.com/

      Trump could cure cancer and the Left would be furious over it.