We applaud Matisyahu for his stand against BDS

20 Aug

matis

matisyahu_030714

Jewish musician Matisyahu had a concert cancelled in Valencia, Spain, when he failed to comply with a demand to clarify his position on Palestinian statehood.

One day later, organizers at the Rototom Sunsplash Reggae Festival re-invited him to perform on August 22 as originally planned, following outrage from the Spanish government and people around the world.

Matisyahu was dropped from the festival lineup earlier this week after the festival succumbed to pressure from the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. (Jerusalem Post).

Matisyahu’s response via his Facebook Page:

“The Festival organizers contacted me because they were getting pressure from the BDS movement. They wanted me to write a letter, or make a video, stating my positions on Zionism and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to pacify the BDS people. I support peace and compassion for all people. My music speaks for itself, and I do not insert politics into my music.

“Music has the power to transcend the intellect, ideas and politics and it can unite people in the process. The Festival kept insisting that I clarify my personal views; which felt like clear pressure to agree with the BDS political agenda.

Honestly, it was appalling and offensive, that as one publicly Jewish-American artist scheduled for the Festival, they were trying to coerce me into political statements.

Were any other artists scheduled to perform asked to make political statements in order to perform? No artist deserves to be put into such a situation simply to perform his or her art. Regardless of race, creed, country, cultural background etc … my goal is to play music for all people. As musicians, this is what we seek.”

Blessed Love,

Matis

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2 Responses to “We applaud Matisyahu for his stand against BDS”

  1. Benno Herzog August 20, 2015 at 4:37 pm #

    Good article. But: the festival was not in Madrid but in Benicassim which is in Valencia, Spain.

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