Coachella's owner denies he supports anti-LGBTQ causes


Music lovers were excited by the release of Coachella's 2017 lineup earlier this week.

But some fans felt uneasy after reports came out that that Phil Anschutz, the CEO of AEG, the company that runs Coachella, donated massive sums of money to anti-LGBTQ causes and organizations.

Punk band Show Me the Body is scheduled to perform at this year's Coachella festival. But band members said they were appalled when they found out about the headlines, and they called the fees they would make from playing the festival "blood money."

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Advocacy group Freedom For All Americans put Anschutz on its "enemies of equality" list. It reported that from 2010 to 2013, his foundation gave nearly $200,000 to several groups that fought against gay marriage.

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LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 16: Paris Hilton is seen at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 16, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 16: Kendall Jenner is seen at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 16, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 15: Singer Ellie Goulding poses backstage during day 1 of the 2016 Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Club on April 15, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Coachella)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 16: Brooklyn Beckham is seen at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 16, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 16: Chanel Iman is seen at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 16, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
PALM SPRINGS, CA - APRIL 15: Suki Waterhouse wearing Hunter Original Black Bomber jacket and Hunter Original Slides in Coachella Valley, California on April 15, 2016. (Photo by Rachel Murray/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 16: Alessandra Ambrosio is seen at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 16, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 16: Rachel McCord is seen at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 16, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 16: Patrick Schwarzenegger is seen at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on April 16, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 17: Singer Rihanna performs on day 3 of the 2016 Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Club on April 17, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by Mark Davis/Getty Images for Coachella)
PALM SPRINGS, CA - APRIL 17: Jack Lawless, Kat Graham, JinJoo Lee, Joe Jonas and Cole Whittle attend The Las Vegas #WHHSH Music Lounge Palm Springs During Coachella at Ingleside Inn on April 17, 2016 in Palm Springs, California. (Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for The BMF Media Group)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 17: Diplo performs during Major Lazer onstage during day 3 of the 2016 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Club on April 17, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Coachella)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 17: Musician Sia performs onstage during day 3 of the 2016 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Club on April 17, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Coachella)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 17: Singer Alessia Cara performs onstage during day 3 of the 2016 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Club on April 17, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Coachella)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 17: Musician Matthew Healy of The 1975 performs onstage during day 3 of the 2016 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Club on April 17, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Coachella)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 17: Singer Tei Shi performs onstage during day 3 of the 2016 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Club on April 17, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Coachella)
INDIO, CA - APRIL 16: Courtney Sixx heads to the Coachella Festival on April 16, 2016 in Indio, California. (Photo by TSM/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
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Environmental advocacy group Greenpeace also said Anschutz partnered with Republican mega-donors the Koch brothers to fund climate change denial efforts.

But the billionaire hit back at the statements. Anschutz told Rolling Stone that claims he and his foundation fund anti-LGBTQ causes are "fake news" and "garbage." He said, "Neither I nor the Foundation fund any organization with the purpose or expectation that it would finance anti-LGBTQ initiatives."

He added that if he found out his foundation supported any anti-LGBTQ groups or initiatives, the funding would stop immediately.

Freedom for All Americans' executive director said he was pleased with Anschutz's apparent change of heart.

He told Rolling Stone, "It's encouraging to see that even those who've funded groups opposed to LGBT equality in the past are willing to change their views and come around to opposing discrimination."

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