Duncan Laurence Eurovision 2021 Semi 1
Photo: EBU/ANDRES PUTTING

Going global means being a model for many, and Eurovision 2019 winner Duncan Laurence is taking a strong stance on Hungary’s recently passed anti-LGBT law.

In an interview with Belgium’s MNM, the “Arcade” singer said that he won’t perform in the country because of the new law, which bans content deemed to “promote homosexuality and gender change to minors”. Adding extra insult, the proposal is wrapped up in a government bill that punishes pedophilia, essentially connecting gay people with the abuse of minors. The law also bans LGBT literature for under-18s, which includes educational material and advertisements deemed to promote gay rights.

“If you want to accept who you are, you should surround yourself by people who love you and leave the country,” Duncan said. “I won’t perform there again. That’s very difficult, because there’s people who would feel supported by me being there, however when a country goes against human rights, you have to make a clear statement”.

“You don’t choose your sexuality. It’s not okay to discriminate in this way.”

Duncan is a well-known figure within the LGBT community. He recently premiered his song  “Heaven Is A Hand To Hold”, which features on the soundtrack for season two of the American romantic drama series Love, Victor. He also got engaged to his boyfriend last year.

His winning Eurovision entry “Arcade” has met huge success two years after his victory. After going viral on TikTok, it’s spent several weeks on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. Duncan also got to perform on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

It’s worth mentioning that “Arcade” charted in Hungary as well. Back in May 2021, it peaked at 34 on the country’s chart.

Conchita Wurst: “When they ask why Pride is still needed…”

Duncan Laurence is not the only Eurovision winner to have spoken on the issue. Conchita Wurst has also criticised Hungary’s new law.

Writing on an Instagram story, she stated: “When they ask you why Pride is still needed…”, and shared a piece of news on the issue.

conchita wurst

Do you agree with Duncan’s take on the issue? Let us know in the comments box below!

Read more Eurovision news here.

56 Comments
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Alex
Alex
10 months ago

Poland, Turkey, Hungary can stay out of Eurovision, i wouldn’t care. Glad that Belarus is out too. Oh i wish Azerbaijan was not competing, such a hellish place for human rights (and of course LGBT rights).

Khazar
10 months ago
Reply to  Alex

In your sweet dreams! Lol

Maya G
Maya G
10 months ago

This law is reprehensible. I feel so sad for LGBTQ Hungarians and I sympathize with Duncan’s outrage, but I don’t think boycott is the right move.
In fact, Duncan is really boycotting his fans in Hungary, many of whom are likely LGBTQ themselves. IMO he should perform there and show solidarity with the local LGBTQ struggle.

Alex
Alex
10 months ago

this ius so sad for Hungarian gay people.

Hypocricy when their extreme right wing guy got caught in a gay orgy. I wonder if Hungarians forgot it or not??

Dawid
Dawid
10 months ago

Btw what happened with that prominent Fidesz politician that got busted during some gay gangbang in Brussels? Is he still their protector of traditions and family?

Dawid
Dawid
10 months ago

They planted their people wherever they could. Even if they lost election, they would still have a lot to say. Like a lot

Azaad
Azaad
11 months ago

I think Hungary’s laws are worse than Poland’s for what it’s worth. Also the Hungarian government is really racist and anti democratic as well and those factors may influence Duncan’s decision as well.

Azaad
Azaad
11 months ago

Didn’t Hungary use Covid as an excuse to pass anti transgender legislation last year? Yeah for a variety of reasons Fidesz is horrible, apparently they wanted Hungary to withdraw from ESC not only because they’re homophobic but also because they didn’t like the multicultural aspect of ESC either.

Sot
Sot
11 months ago

So that means we won’t be seeing Hungary in Eurovision any time soon either. A sweet-sour thought, because it’s always heartbreaking to see countries leave the contest for well over 5 years or so but, on the other hand, I hated some Hungarian songs. There are some exceptions of course, like 2012, 2013, 2016 and 2017, so would that mean that in 2020 and 2021 they would have sent a nice song?

Fast Food Music Lover
Fast Food Music Lover
11 months ago

Really distraught to see Hungary, Poland and not too long ago, Turkey, all retreating back in to conservatism. Hopefully, EBU will be able to attract them back to the contest and let them continue participating because this contest—while not being a gay contest per se—really shows what equality really means and proves that LGBT is not at all anyone’s enemy.

Erasmus
Erasmus
10 months ago

conservatism is not bad in principal… some ideas are good and modern conservatism is better than leftism in modern countries… in Eastern Europe, it’s the other way around tho.

Ashton
Ashton
10 months ago
Reply to  Erasmus

no, Erasmus. just no.

Pantomimlo
Pantomimlo
11 months ago

I don’t feel hate, I just feel sorry about Hungary, my country. It’s so sad that now everyone thinks that all the Hungarians are homophobic (but this is definitely not true). I really hope that after next year’s election we’ll return to Europe with a new goverment.

Princess Montana Deluxe
Princess Montana Deluxe
11 months ago

Lol i really wanted Hungary to win this contest circa 2014-2016… how times have changed. They can keep their homophobic attitude… Eurovision doesn’t need them.

Hello hi
Hello hi
11 months ago

So are you going to say goodbye to about 20% of the countries in Eurovision because of the views a majority of people in certain countries have ?
Tolerance ?

Nils
Nils
11 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

If by ‘certain countries’ you mean the remaining 80 %, then yes, those 20 % should pack their things and leave.

If the Turkish and Hungarian autocrats or the Chinese broadcaster deem Eurovision ‘too gay’, just screw them.

Intolerance doesn’t have to be tolerated.

Hello hi
Hello hi
11 months ago
Reply to  Nils

Ukraine , Serbia , Moldova, Russia , Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia and many more have majority percentages that don’t tolerate homosexuality. So you believe the shouldn’t be in the contest ?

Sonam
Sonam
11 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

If their governments feel that eurovision is not for them, bon voyage! It’s not that EBU or the fans are kicking them out

Alex
Alex
10 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

Serbia had a lesbian winner, what are you tsalking about?

Azerbaijan should be out for sure. Russia is a massive market that EBU does not want to lose, apparently.

WannaEatMySpaghetti
WannaEatMySpaghetti
11 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

Tolerance does not mean accepting intolerance from others.

Hello hi
Hello hi
10 months ago

So do you tolerate the religious views of other then ?
I don’t agree with any homophobia but I respect what others choose to believe. That is true liberalism and tolerance

Lisianthus
Lisianthus
10 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

Taking people’s human rights away has nothing to do with tolerance or beliefs.

Azaad
Azaad
11 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

The views of private individuals is one thing, discriminatory policies enacted by governments is something else.

Hello hi
Hello hi
10 months ago
Reply to  Azaad

It’s the government’s job to enact the will of the people and serve the views of the people

Frisian esc
Frisian esc
11 months ago

EU needs to take measures against countries like poland and hungary right now. Support for the EU in western countries will fall very quickly if it means we’re sending money to fascist regimes to oppress their citizens.

Nils
Nils
11 months ago
Reply to  Frisian esc

There mustn’t be a place for them in the EU.

Hello hi
Hello hi
11 months ago
Reply to  Nils

I don’t agree with what Hungary is doing but I don’t believe the EU should be allowed to make calls on the sovereign decisions of a country . Let the people of Hungary decide what is best for them

Jonas
Jonas
11 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

If that country chose to be part of the EU, then they have the requirement to meet EU standards – if they don’t like it, they don’t get to be members.

Ray
Ray
11 months ago
Reply to  Jonas

They haven’t broken EU law and being gay in Hungary in not a crime. EU ‘standards’ have changed significantly on the issue since Hungary originally joined.

Hello hi
Hello hi
11 months ago
Reply to  Jonas

Standards yes but not what the “culturally” believe. Stop forcing countries into a mould

NickC
NickC
11 months ago
Reply to  Hello hi

This is not about culture, this is about basic human rights. If people of a country decide one day to kill all women, or roma people, should they not be stopped? EU should grow some backbone and stop supporting (financially) oppressive regimes.

Azaad
Azaad
11 months ago
Reply to  NickC

On a related note, I wish the EU would take a stronger stance on upholding Roma rights.

Erasmus
Erasmus
11 months ago

OK but I don’t understand how this will help anybody lol? Hungary (rather the government) will keep this law with Duncan performing there or not? it’s not like the money he will make there will go to Orban

Azaad
Azaad
11 months ago
Reply to  Erasmus

It’s a principled stance and one that’s made in solidarity with LGBTQ Hungarians.

Alex
Alex
11 months ago

Not like he’s getting booked either way lol

ESCFanGA
ESCFanGA
11 months ago

Unfortunately I don’t think Hungary will ever return to Eurovision as long as their current government is in charge. I worry that other countries could follow Hungary too. (Poland is the first name that comes to mind)

Alex
Alex
10 months ago
Reply to  ESCFanGA

Obviously they won’t return with the current leadership, that’s not news. I wish they were banned from EBU, just like Belarus. That would teach them a good lesson.

Shuma
Shuma
11 months ago

No Duncan Lawrence in Hungary. Not sure how Viktor Orban’s going to cope with this devastating news.

Anhel
Anhel
11 months ago

I’m afraid my country is gonna be next… homophobia has been on the rise for a while here and I was hoping our politicians won’t dare try anything extreme because the EU is monitoring them, but Hungary is in the EU too. : ( It’s getting tough in Eastern Europe.

Bombalurina
Bombalurina
11 months ago
Reply to  Anhel

excuse me , where are you from ? You don’t have to answer if it’s private

Last edited 11 months ago by Bombalurina
Anhel
Anhel
11 months ago
Reply to  Bombalurina

Bulgaria

Sot
Sot
11 months ago
Reply to  Anhel

OH NOT BULGARIA

Mariia
11 months ago
Reply to  Anhel

It is the opposite in Ukraine which is pretty homophobic. We have Prides every year, more and more people support. Last year we even had the first gay character in tv-series

Balint
Balint
11 months ago

Most of us Hungarians are deeply ashamed of this new law. Duncan’s response is totally understandable. It’s just devastating that such a law can still exist in the 21st century.

Jérémy
11 months ago

The introduction of this law make me thinking that Hungary will not return to ESC 2022

Leo
Leo
11 months ago
Reply to  Jérémy

Hungary is gone for good
They’ll treat the contest the same way Turkey did

Leo
Leo
11 months ago
Reply to  Jérémy

Also I’m worried about Poland’s withdrawal but I think due to their history with the ebu and the level of interest they may stay

Last edited 11 months ago by Leo
Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
11 months ago
Reply to  Leo

We’ll see later in the year how many countries will participate and if Poland will be one of them.

Kristian
Kristian
11 months ago
Reply to  Leo

Poland is a JESC powerhouse , they won’t withdraw from eurovision

Dawid
Dawid
10 months ago
Reply to  Kristian

They will withdraw from adult contest and stay in junior one. JESC good, ESC bad narrative is going here for years already

ESCFanGA
ESCFanGA
11 months ago
Reply to  Leo

Russia also has a conservative government hostile towards the LGBT community and yet they still participate in Eurovision. However, I imagine Eurovision is far more popular in Russia given their successful track record at the contest. Based on this there’s a greater risk of Poland withdrawing.

Alex
Alex
10 months ago
Reply to  ESCFanGA

Eurovision is very popular in Russia and they do well (Top 10 almost every year). Turkey got mad after they missed winning in 2009 and 2010 and then they stayed in the semifinal which was a big shock for them.

Hungary paid the price for electing this mad dictator. However, they didn’t do extremely well the last few years (except 2017)

esc_fl
esc_fl
11 months ago
Reply to  Jérémy

Hungary’s sent so many good entries, I was hoping they’d get their first win soon!

canada_piano
canada_piano
11 months ago

good on him to take this desicion. certain artists will have continued to perform there for that sweet sweet money

Mariia
11 months ago
Reply to  canada_piano

Reminds me of Ukrainian artists perfoming in Russia while we have war

Aplk
Aplk
11 months ago
Reply to  Mariia

Bang