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The Owner of Coachella Has Allegedly Funded Anti-LGBTQ Groups and Climate Change Deniers

New reports are directed at Philip Anschutz, who owns the festival’s parent company AEG Live.
Lauren O'Neill
London, GB

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival has been the spiritual home of American nu-hippiedom and girls wearing $20 flower crowns from Urban Outfitters since 2001. This year, it will boast three outspokenly liberal headliners: Beyoncé, Kendrick Lamar and Radiohead. However, according to recent reports by Uproxx and Afropunk, that free love, left-wing spirit is actually more of a façade – as the festival's owner has been accused of allegedly funding ultra-conservative political causes such as climate change denial and anti-LGBTQ organisations. Coachella is run by Goldenvoice, an offshoot of the AEG group, a large sports and entertainment company. The AEG group – or Anschutz Entertainment Group – is in turn owned by Philip Anschutz, who, according to the Washington Post, has been a financial benefactor for groups such as the Alliance Defending Freedom, the Family Research Council and the National Christian Foundation, all of whom stand in opposition to LGBTQ equality. Anschutz also supports anti-gay legislation, such as Colorado's Amendment 2. Moreover, the environmental charity Greenpeace notes his activity alongside climate change-denial groups, highlighting his biannual meetings with oil and gas billionaires the Koch brothers, two of the most outspoken climate change deniers in the US. These revelations are a blow for Coachella, which has a reputation as a liberal haven. The festival sold out in three hours yesterday at $399 a ticket, though none of the acts on the line up have yet commented on the recent reports. More on this story as we get it. Follow Lauren on Twitter. (Image by Alan Paone via Wikipedia)