Travis Scott, who produced and headlined the Astroworld event, is now being sued for negligence and 'encouragement of violence' at the festival.
In the wake of the tragic Astroworld music festival that resulted in 10 deaths and many more injuries, netizens have taken to sharing clips of times artists stopped concerts to care for ailing audience members. One such video making the rounds of the internet this week is that of the late Michael Jackson which features him stopping a show mid-song to call for security and ask that they save a bug that had made its way on stage. "Security," he calls in the video. "Could you get this bug? I don't want, I don't want anybody to step on this."
"Don't kill it, though. Don't kill it!” he says to the security guard who comes to remove the insect until the guard assures the singer that the bug is alive and well in his hand. Commenting on the now-viral video — posted to TikTok by a Michael Jackson fan account — netizens compared the "Billie Jean" singer's actions to those of Travis Scott and Astroworld staff members who've come under severe fire for failing to stop the show even when the festival attendees were in dire need of assistance. "Travis Scott couldn't pay attention to 8 dead people and this man noticed a bug," commented TikTok user Merhawi. "Michael Jackson stops a show for a bug but Travis Scott can't even stop a show for people's lives," wrote Jair Carrizal.
Scott, who produced and headlined the event, is now being sued for negligence and "encouragement of violence" at the festival. According to BuzzFeed News, an attendee named Manuel Souza who said he was injured during the chaos was the first to file a lawsuit in the aftermath of the "mass casualty" incident that took place last week. The lawsuit accuses Scott, ScoreMore, and Live Nation — the concert company responsible for organizing the event — of ignoring potential warning signs that compromised the safety of the event even before performances had started.
At least 58 lawsuits have been filed over the Astroworld tragedy as attendees seek answers from officials, concert organizers and Travis Scott. https://t.co/qCg6h10KgI— CNN (@CNN) November 11, 2021
It also blames the show's organizers for allowing Scott's performance to continue even after ambulances had arrived to treat attendees who had "suffered serious obvious injury." Souza's attorney, Steve Kherkher, claims that those in charge of the event were aware of "the extreme risk of harm to concertgoers that was escalating by the moment" and still "made the conscious decision to let the show go on."
This sums up how I feel about Astro world pic.twitter.com/n6IRMjgcmS— SELAH (@Selahannmariah) November 8, 2021
"Eventually, due to the defendants' active decision to let the show go on, the scene devolved into a complete melee, resulting in the needless, untimely death of at least 8 people and injuries to scores of others," the suit states. It also alleges that the tragic incident was a direct consequence of "a motivation for profit at the expense of concertgoers' health and safety" and the "encouragement of violence" by Scott himself. According to The New York Times, witnesses have described a chaotic scene both before and during the concert. One concertgoer, Neema Djavadzadeh, said the event was "hectic from the beginning."
"I got there around 3 and saw people already struggling to stand straight," she said. "There was a lot of mob mentality going on, people willing to do whatever to be in line for merch, food, shows, you name it. A lot of fights broke out throughout the day." Some attendees revealed that the crush of the crowd was so intense that it left them no room to move. "You can literally jump in the air and you’re there in the air — it’s like if your hands are up, your hands are staying up," said 20-year-old Vanessa Johnson.