Music superstar Lizzo delivered a keynote address to open Austin’s South by Southwest (SXSW) music festival on Sunday, and she had some strong words for Texas politicians.
In an interview with iHeartMedia moderator Angela Yee at the Austin Convention Center, Lizzo, who is from Houston, took aim at legislation limiting trans rights and abortion access. “I’m proud to rep Houston, but I’m not proud to rep Texan politics right now,” she said in the address, which was broadcast virtually. “They are taking away the right for young children to live authentically as themselves, and it’s a violation of human rights. Trans rights are human rights. Period.”
She added, “we got a lot of other things y’all need to be handling instead of y’all being in people’s homes, telling them what to do with they body and being all up in their uteruses. Mind your business! Because the abortion ban is atrocious as well.”
Last year, Texas politicians approved legislation that would prevent trans athletes from participating in scholastic sports teams in accordance with their gender identities. Earlier this year, the state’s Republican governor, Greg Abbott, issued a directive that would allow state agencies to investigate parents who help trans minors seek gender-affirming care.
Last year, the state also enacted a restrictive abortion ban that would limit the procedure after six weeks, and deputize private citizens to file suit against anyone who assisted another individual in procuring an abortion after the six-week limit.
“Mind your business. Stay out of my body,” Lizzo told lawmakers in her address Sunday.
The artist said that while she is “changing things on a cultural level, because I’m part of the culture, I’m a musician, I’m an actress. But you know, there are people in charge who can change things on a systemic level, and they’re letting us down.”