Next year, make sure to pack the sunscreen and rhinestones, and definitely do not forget that portable charger. You’re in for a long few weeks, which you will not escape from without shedding some sweat, glitter and after this year’s festival, tears, if you’re a fan of The Weeknd.
Every spring, thousands flock to Coachella, a wildly popular music festival held in Indio, California. Coachella is possibly the most talked about music festival, featuring iconic headlining performers such as Beyoncé, Cardi B and SZA.
But Coachella is not all fun and music. Coachella has a horrible reputation for being the site of mass irresponsible drug and alcohol use, as well as sexual assault.
Besides the horrible cultural appropriation, another major issue is the fact that owner, Philip Anschutz, has donated money made from Coachella to anti-LGBT and anti-gun control organizations under the Anschutz Foundation. Pitchfork brings this issue to light.
Many pro-LGBT and pro-gun control performers and festival-goers feed money into Coachella, which is funneled directly into these organizations that go against all of the causes they claim to support.
Do not fear though, the festival is still on. There are many other festivals that are just as Instagram worthy and deserving of your money. Imagine Dragons’ Daniel Reynolds’s Loveloud Festival, held in Salt Lake City, Utah, aims to raise and donate $1,000,000 to LGBTQ charities such as Encircle, Trevor Project, and many more. “Dan Reynolds founded the LOVELOUD Foundation to help ignite the relevant and vital conversation about what it means to unconditionally love, understand, accept and support our LGBTQ+ friends and family.”
–The Loveloud Foundation Mission
Reynolds is Mormon, but detests the treatment of LGBTQ+ people. Reynolds purposely holds his festival in a heavily anti-LGBT region, giving the community a place of love and acceptance––not to mention some good music––in the midst of such intolerance. This year’s headlining acts included rising star, Grace Vanderwaal.
Reynolds is a relatively unrecognized ally, not stopping at spoken acceptance, but giving a space and large donation to make the community feel safe and welcome.
There are many other ways you can fix the problem, and the simplest way is to simply not attend Coachella. Save your money, treat yourself instead.
Another way is to be aware of where your money is going—always check where profits are donated and be aware of yourself.
Whether or not you attend or support Coachella, you should always be aware of your impact on others, whether it’s respecting them or donating to good charities.
Otherwise, have fun, wear SPF and listen to some good music!