If you asked me to name some musicians who seem like serious people with strong personal convictions, I'm not sure my first guesses would have included Carly Rae Jepsen. Maybe it's the 10,000 "Call Me Maybe" parodies I've seen, but I guess I thought of her as a fairly frivolous, flash-in-the-pan artist unlikely to cause controversy. Which is why it's a little surprising to hear she's dropped out of the Boy Scouts National Jamboree this year -- in protest of the organization’s ban on gay Scouts and gay Scout leaders.
Her decision came after a Change.org petition asked her to reconsider headlining the event, and I find it fairly impressive that she did so. Wherever you land on the issue of the Boy Scouts' policies, I think it's inspiring to hear about an artist who's willing to take a stand for something she believes in. Even though this move may hurt her popularity.
The Change.org petition was started by gay Eagle Scout Derek Nance, and it reads in part,
My name is Derek Nance. I'm an Eagle Scout and a former Boy Scout camp leader. I'm also gay, and a fan of Carly Rae Jepsen (Call Me Maybe) and Train (Drops of Jupiter). That's why I was surprised to see that both Carly Rae and Train would be headlining the National Scout Jamboree this July, but hadn't yet spoken out against the Boy Scouts' policy banning gay youth and parents. As a talented artists with incredibly loyal LGBT fans around the globe, I hope they will speak out quickly, and urge the Boy Scouts to end its dangerous anti-gay policy.
Four days and 62,000 signatures later, both Train and Jepsen had dropped out of the performance.
Jepsen took to Twitter this morning to explain her actions:
As an artist who believes in equality for all people, I will not be participating in the Boy Scouts of America Jamboree this summer. I always have and will continue to support the LGBT community on a global level and stay informed on the ever changing landscape in the ongoing battle for gay rights in this country and across the globe.
I think it's a pretty brave move for her considering that she's not super well-established as a musician yet. She's had a couple of Grammy nominations, but she's only got two albums under her belt -- and there are plenty of people who only associate her with that one specific earworm. (Or, thanks to this crazy mashup, possibly have her confused with Nine Inch Nails.)
Good for her for having the balls to put her beliefs before profits, and show she's more than just a catchy YouTube fad.
What do you think of Carly Rae Jepsen's decision to drop out of the Boy Scout Jamboree?
Image via Carly Rae Jepsen