Local artist Mo Sabri has a new song called “Johnson City, Tennessee.” The song video is generally upbeat and features well known community leaders like Congressman Phil Roe and other notable people from the area. However, the song takes a disturbing turn at the 2:40 mark when Mo Sabri makes a derogatory comment about people who don’t appreciate his music, saying “…if you do not like my music then you belong at New Beginnings” (2:40). This is a clear reference to a local establishment in Johnson City that serves the gay community.
This is unacceptable slur directed at lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Mr. Sabri's community. By allowing themselves to be featured in this video, local community, school and business leaders are passively agreeing with Mr. Sabri’s remarks which only serve to marginalize LGBT people.
Mo Sabri is quickly becoming a spokesman for his community. We’re seeking an apology for the potential harm he has caused. We would hate to see Electric 94.9, Campbell Morrell Music, State Farm Insurance Company, the Carmike Cinema, Dr. Enuf, and any artists associated with Mr. Sabri lose customers and support through their association with homophobia.
Tell leaders in Johnson City that sanctioning homophobia is bad for our community and bad for business. Ask them to demand that Mo Sabri change his defamatory lyrics and apologize to the public.