American tape “Fun” members, Andrew Dost, Nate Ruess (lead singer), and also Jack Antonoff. Photo: sustained by Ramen
By: chris Azzopardi*/Special because that TRT–
If Nate Ruess, Jack Antonoff and also Andrew Dost have taught us anything, the this: You can be fun. And also still stand up for other serious.
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The breakout single that sent the brand-new York-based band’s sophomore album, some Nights, soaring, “We room Young” gotten in the pop-culture zeitgeist nearly overnight through commercial spots and also a Glee rendition. Their common earworms provided them a platform, and also they was standing on it and also told the people – time and time again, during sold-out shows and in virtual essays – how they support equal rights.
In this interview through Jack Antonoff, the 28-year-old guitarist talks about being drawn to the happy community’s “inspiring” ways of uniting in the face of oppression, the stigma of being a straight guy who no care about the fight and how that loves Lena Dunham favor a lesbian.
Chris Azzopardi: You’re one of the happy community’s greatest supporters, and also you’ve been very outspoken around it. When and why did happy issues become so essential to you?
A: i wish there was a an excellent story or a poetic answer, yet I simply don’t know exactly how anyone could not it is in outspoken and also enraged with any violation of person rights. If the government made decision tomorrow to piece Jews or afri Americans of specific rights, no one would certainly say, “How did friend get involved with Jews’ human rights, lol blah blah?” that would simply be this universal violation the we would all it is in up in arms about. But the problem of gay, bisexual and trans rights, the differentiate is therefore ingrained in us that the this slow-moving process of world realizing exactly how shameful it is, the method we treat our citizens. Anyone that is even remotely cognizant is speaking up and also fighting for equal rights.
Q: It’s hard for some world to know that girlfriend don’t have to be happy to care about gay people. Is the the instance for you and the band?
One-hundred percent. That’s the big thing: We’re less involved with the Westboro Baptist Church than we room with just the average American who has actually a an excellent heart and also is quite smart however isn’t completely educated top top the issues, and if this human being knew everything would was standing up and also fight.
I think most Americans have actually no problem with homosexuality or gay people. They just think, “Oh, they have civil unions; we have actually marriage – what’s the difference? that cares.”
They nothing realize that 1,000-plus rights are denied. They don’t think of adoption rights or job-related comp rights. Connecting all the dots is a substantial thing and the difference in between people being like, “Yeah, i think gay people should it is in equal” versus really making a huge deal out of it and really thinking about it when they vote. The reason for the band speaking out is, if you have any sort of stage or soapbox in 2013 in America – and also really all over in the world – you have to be utilizing that to talk about human rights and all civilization being cure equal.
Q: So as a celebrity you have a responsibility to speak up?
A: Absolutely. The a really weird life. Public numbers deserve privacy. They don’t deserve to it is in thrown into the fire just since they have an audience. I mean, we’re the end here because we’re artists, we’re songwriters. What I carry out is what ns am and I would recognize if someone just wanted to put out what they’re over there to put out. However it’s simply one that those facility generations. Ten or 15 years ago it to be a small different because at that allude we were just X quantity of years away from a finding out curve of not really expertise what was going on. But now, in 2013, we have all the information and also we’ve seen the effects of homophobia and we’ve checked out the effects of denying citizens’ rights. It’s just a time whereby I nothing think any type of of us have the high-end to not stand up.
Q: together a straight ally in the hit for happy rights, what effect do you think you have on the gay rights movement that you wouldn’t if you to be gay?
A: that all about the strength we each have based upon who us are and also where we come from. Obviously, LGBTQ civilization have the power that comes v being oppressed. Those who space denied rights have actually the most inspiring voice in fighting for them. But past that, over there is a distinct power that comes through being a person who is not denied rights but still cares and also will fight because that them together if they to be their very own rights. Furthermore, gift someone that others presume wouldn’t care, or even opposes gay rights, offers you an even greater strength in speak up for gay rights.
There is stigma that comes in addition to being straight – choose we nothing care. Gift straight and standing up because that gay civil liberties is a statement that states “this is everyone issue.” We are not all free unless we space all free. Just since I was born into the elite class of directly Americans who have actually maximum civil liberties does not average that ns won’t fight as if it to be me gift denied human being rights.
Q: If funny were a band 30 years ago and had actually come the end in favor of happy rights, you probably would have jeopardized your career. What does it say about this time in our resides that you’re maybe to stand up and also still preserve a far-reaching fan base?
A: We obtain asked, “If you guys are gonna it is in political, execute you issue you’ll it is in offending world who space coming to your shows?” and also the prize for united state is, “Well, if anyone has a problem with us, then they’re homophobic and hateful and we’re glad to not have actually them come to our shows.” (Laughs)
It’s an exceptional time, and I think with the means the web works, it’s simple to think that there’s a lot more hate than there is. Clear we only hear the many disgusting stories and, together they should, the fear stories inspire change. But what we’ve learned from touring and being outspoken in the press about this is the there is great support – and even whereby there isn’t an excellent support, there is a hunger for knowledge.
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We collection up booths at our shows and it’s not like human being are coming up slamming their fists down and also being like, “Stop redefining the family.” us never get that. Us get human being coming up and saying, “I don’t really recognize why this worry matters.”
Q: will certainly you lug the booth on the present tour? and also how about The allied Coalition that the band and also your sister, Rachel, recently developed – is the coming through you, together well?
A: The allied Coalition, or TAC together we speak to it, will be through us for the foreseeable future. We’ve constantly done a lot through the issue and then we realized the if we had a huge umbrella to funnel all this under, we might do so lot more. Therefore we began The ally Coalition, i beg your pardon is a nonprofit. And also it’s kind of boundless.