Stop me if you think that you’ve heard this one before: Is Los Angeles’ Staples Center going vegetarian for a Morrissey concert on March 1?
British alternative rocker, Morrissey—the outspoken vegan animal rights activist and former Smiths lead singer—is hoping to make history with his forthcoming concert appearance in Los Angeles this coming Friday. According to Morrissey’s representative, the Staples Center venue will only offer its guests vegetarian food items on the evening of Morrissey’s performance. The 20,000-person capacity concert and sports venue owned by AEG and promoter Goldenvoice (Coachella) has agreed to the mandate per Morrissey’s request for all of the food vendors to ban “flesh as food” for the evening. Additionally, all McDonald’s outlets in the facility will be non-operational during the evening.
But a spokesperson for the Staples Center told Reuters another story: “As of right now, there will be meat options for fans,” and the venue will reportedly include vegetarian options for Morrissey’s strict vegetarian fans.
According to a press release by Morrissey’s representative, the victory is particularly notable as the same request previously made by fellow British rocker and vegetarian, Sir Paul McCartney, was denied by the Staples Center. Morrissey was quoted as saying: “I don’t look upon it as a victory for me, but a victory for the animals.” But in some ways, it’s also a victory for Morrissey that he gets to perform at all. The singer has been plagues recently with a bleeding ulcer. He’s already had to cancel or reschedule many dates on the tour and has even suggested he may officially retire in 2014.
AEG and Goldenvoice will reportedly also donate a portion of all ticket sales to the animal rights group PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals); both Morrissey and McCartney have done promotional work for the organization.
The Smiths’ second album, Meat is Murder, released in 1985, is noted for its strong pro-vegetarian messaging; and countless vegans and vegetarians (this writer included) credit Morrissey as influencing their decision to adopt an animal-free diet and lifestyle.
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Image: Man Alive!