ANN ARBOR, MI — A recent ad for Joe Biden’s campaign featuring The Blind Pig and its owner, Joe Malcoun, was removed from the internet after Malcoun and his family began receiving threats.
In a statement to MLive, Malcoun said that he and his family have experienced constant harassment, both online and offline. As a result, Malcoun and the Biden campaign agreed to pull the ad before more harm was done.
“Our phones are ringing non-stop with people threatening us. Our social media accounts are flooded with hate and vitriol. Strangers have shown up to my family’s doorstep looking to harass us after a Craigslist ad published all of our personal information,” Malcoun said.
The ad was posted to YouTube on Thursday, Oct. 15, but has since disappeared. In an email to The New York Times, Bill Russo, a spokesperson for the Biden campaign, said the price for having a voice in the political process cannot be endless harassment.
“And yet, that is what Joe Malcoun and his family currently face as he was doxxed, harassed and threatened after the Trump campaign has sought to smear a community leader who dared to speak out against Trump’s failed response to the Covid crisis. It is shameful,” Russo told The New York Times.
The ad featured Malcoun and other performance venues that are at risk of closing, and Malcoun blamed the Bling Pig’s economic inactivity on President Donald Trump.
“For 50 years, the Blind Pig has been open and crowded, but right now it’s an empty room,” says Malcoun in the minute-long ad, which has been taken down. “This is the reality of Trump’s Covid response.
“We don’t know how much longer we can survive not having any revenue,” Malcoun said.
Malcoun told MLive that he was speaking on behalf of thousands of small clubs across the country whose employees are suffering.
“Artists can’t tour and make a living and fans can’t enjoy live music. This is a tragedy,” Malcoun said.
The Blind Pig in June considered resuming live music concerts, but decided to cancel its summer and fall bookings after experiencing low attendance.
The concert venue has capacity for about 400 people and has hosted acts ranging from Otis Rush and Nirvana to KRS-One through its storied history.
The 4,355-square-foot building was built in 1901, according to MLive records, and served as a spot for musical acts over more than five decades.
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