Bruce Springsteen slammed President Trump’s controversial immigration ban during a concert in Australia on Monday, saying that the move is “fundamentally un-American.”
“Tonight, we want to add our voices to the thousands of Americans who are protesting at airports around the country the Muslim ban and the detention of foreign nationals and refugees,” Springsteen said Monday in a video of the concert posted to YouTube. “America is a nation of immigrants and we find this anti-democratic and fundamentally un-American.”
“This is an immigrant song,” Springsteen added before playing “American Land,” a 2006 track that was released on 2012’s Wrecking Ball. In the song, Springsteen sings of “the blacks, the Irish, Italians, the Germans, and the Jews / Come across the water a thousand miles from home.”
In addition to “American Land,” Springsteen also played protest songs including “The Ties That Bind,” “No Surrender,” “Land of Hope and Dreams,” and “Trapped,” a cover of a Jimmy Cliff track that fan site BruceBase.com says was dedicated to “the detainees.”
Springsteen’s statement puts him on a long list of celebrities speaking out against the immigration ban, which temporarily stops refugees entering the United States from seven predominantly Muslim countries (Somalia, Syria, Sudan, Iran, Iraq, Yemen, and Lybia). Other stars, including filmmaker Michael Moore, comedian Kumail Nanjiani, actress Alyssa Milano, and actor Billy Eichner have also spoken out against the ban.
Locally, the ban drew thousands of protesters to Philadelphia International Airport over the weekend. The airport detained, and later released, refugee and immigrant travelers as part of President Trump’s ban, which Gov. Wolf said brought “a dark day for all of us.”
Springsteen has long been critical of President Trump, telling comedian Marc Maron in a recent episode of the WTF podcast that he is skeptical whether Trump has “the pure competence” to be president.
“I’ve felt disgust before, but never the kind of fear that you feel now,” Springsteen told Maron. “It’s as simple as the fear of, is someone simply competent enough to do this particular job? Forget about where they are ideologically. Do they simply have the pure competence to be put in the position of such responsibility?”