Singer Rob Thomas has pledged his support to the Arizona state boycott as his rock peers fight to overturn controversial new immigration laws. Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello is leading the Sound Strike campaign to speak out against the new legislation, which gives Arizona police new powers to arrest and detain anyone suspected of being an illegal immigrant.
Morello's strike has won the support of artists including Maroon 5, Bright Eyes and Kanye West, who have vowed to boycott all gigs in the state until the laws are changed. Thomas admits he is watching the campaign unfold from the sidelines because he's not currently touring, but the Matchbox 20 frontman insists he is fully behind the action.
He tells WENN, "If I was on the road, I think I'd be in a better position to have an opinion on whether to boycott Arizona or not. I mean, I definitely boycott the idea... I don't like the idea of that one place setting a bad precedent for what it's gonna be like for the future of America."
"I don't think that any of them (boycotting musicians) don't wanna play - I don't think that they really believe that everyone in Arizona is supporting that law; I don't think that anyone of them believes that (the people of Arizona) don't deserve for them to play, but I do think that if enough of them (state legislators) hear their voice, then it's gonna make a difference."
Thomas reveals his rock pals are heartbroken to let fans in Arizona down by refusing to perform there, but he's adamant they're doing the right thing. He adds, "I know some musicians boycotting and they're sick of the decision of not being able to play; they love to play in Phoenix, they love to play in Arizona. But at the same time, when you get that kind of noise together, I think it will make an impact, so I think they are (doing the right thing)."
The law, known as SB 1070, came into effect on Thursday, July 29.