Headlines

‘Little Monsters’ growl
over threats to Gaga

The fans of American pop singer Lady Gaga, known as Little Monsters, are refusing to bow down to threats from hard-liner groups, such as the Islam Defenders Front (FPI), if they attend their idol’s concert in Jakarta next month.

Vina, the founder of Gaga’s Twitter fan-base for Indonesia, which has tens of thousands of followers, said that fans were not bothered with the FPI’s threats because they knew Gaga would never cancel her show due to threats “from seriously narrow-minded people”.

“They judge others based on what they wear and how they look,” the 19-year-old student told The
Jakarta Post.

The singer and songwriter, notorious for her unconventional style of clothing, is set to perform in the capital on June 3 at the Bung Karno Stadium in Senayan, Central Jakarta.

The concert is one of the first stops on Gaga’s world tour titled “The Born This Way Ball”, which is slated from April to October.

Vina added that the FPI’s protest had nothing to do with Gaga’s artistry, but was against “her support and acceptance of gay, lesbian and transgendered people”.

Vina was responding to the FPI’s threats to drive away fans who will gather for the concert.

The chief of the  FPI’s Jakarta branch, Habib Salim Alatas, has said that he would also deploy FPI members to intercept the singer upon her arrival at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, west of Jakarta.

“We refuse to have Gaga’s feet touch our land. She’s bringing the faith of Satan to our country and thus will destroy the nation’s morals,” he told the Post.

During her April 27 concert in Seoul, rallying conservative Christian groups condemned Gaga — who won a total of five Grammy Awards, three of them were earned last year — for supporting homosexuality and pornography.

Ali, a 26-year-old banker in Bandung, West Java, said: “Nothing can stop me from meeting my queen.”

Ali, an openly gay man, said that preventing the singer from performing in Indonesia “will not make gay people turn straight”.

Jakarta Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Rikwanto said that the police would verify the artist’s permission to perform, adding that they would examine “public reaction” toward the 26-year-old American singer, born Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta.

“We will have to verify her permission to perform, where she will be staying and how many crew members [she] is bringing to the country,” he said.

Police say organizers from the concert’s promoter Big Daddy have yet to officially confirm the concert schedule with them.

More than 30,000 concert tickets, which price range from Rp 465,000 (US$50.75) to Rp 2.25 million, have been sold since ticket sales opened on March 10. Promoters had previously said that they were aiming to sell 40,000 tickets.

Representatives of Big Daddy declined to comment on the issue.

A marketing executive of the youth-oriented radio station Prambors said that it would continue to air Lady Gaga’s songs due to her popularity.

Junas Miradiarsyah of the Integrated Promotion Prambors Network said that Prambors would not go “to extremes” in case of a backlash against the station.

Junas said that Prambors, as a member of the media, could play a n “educational role” in helping youth judge “what is good or not”. (asa/png)

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