(Washington, D.C., Feb. 11, 2020)—B’nai B’rith International President Charles O. Kaufman and CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin have issued the following statement:
We call on music, film and media festival South by Southwest (SXSW) to remove an interview with former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters from its schedule of events. Currently, Waters is scheduled to give a sit-down interview with documentary filmmaker Michael Moore. The musician is listed as one of the festival’s keynote speakers.
Waters is an avowed anti-Semite with a long history of demonizing Jews and Israel, which he refers to as a “racist apartheid regime” and a “theocracy.” He is a prominent advocate of the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and blames “the Jewish lobby” for objecting to his views. His shows have featured an inflatable pig marked with a Star of David, which he refused to apologize for.
By cloaking his anti-Semitic beliefs in anti-Israel invective, Waters apparently believes he has carte blanche to spew anti-Jewish tropes. It is unconscionable that Waters be given any platform to air his anti-Semitic views, much less the chance to be a keynote speaker at a major music festival. SXSW should remove him from its lineup immediately.
B’nai B’rith International has advocated for global Jewry and championed the cause of human rights since 1843. B’nai B’rith is recognized as a vital voice in promoting Jewish unity and continuity, a staunch defender of the State of Israel, a tireless advocate on behalf of senior citizens and a leader in disaster relief. With a presence around the world, we are the Global Voice of the Jewish Community. Visit www.bnaibrith.org