A TRUCK CIRCLED Newark on Sept. 7 beginning at noon with the digital message “Roger Waters: We Don’t Need Your Hate & Censorship Against Israel” emblazoned across several sides.
That was the first part of a multi-pronged protest against the Pink Floyd front man organized by StandWithUs and Artists 4 Israel before and during his evening concert at the Prudential Center in Newark.
After arriving at the venue, the truck was accompanied by a 15-foot inflated Pinocchio figure holding a sign that read: “Roger Waters: We Don’t Need Your Lies About Israel!” and graffiti artists who spray-painted 200 T-shirts with messages of peace that were handed out to passersby for free.
Roger Waters, a proponent of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, has called on other musicians to boycott Israel. He also incorporates what many consider to be imagery insensitive to Jews into his concert performances, such as painting a Star of David on his floating pig alongside other symbols, which include a dollar sign and the sickle and hammer.
“Waters’ history of racism includes…spreading conspiracy theories about the ‘Jewish lobby,’ and making slanderous, dehumanizing statements about Israelis,” said Roz Rothstein, CEO of StandWithUs, in a statement. “He also ignores violent racism against Israelis by Palestinian leaders, and whitewashes the murder of innocent civilians by Palestinian terrorist groups. We refuse to allow his hate and lies to go unchallenged.”
StandWithUs, an Israel advocacy organization headquartered in Los Angeles, is staging similar protests at several Roger Waters concerts around the region.
“As artists, we condemn all attempts to censor art and culture, whether it’s at the hands of governments or anti-Israel extremists like Roger Waters,” said Craig Dershowitz, executive director of Artists 4 Israel. “Artists and musicians from all over the world are rejecting Waters’ brand of hate, and embracing the love they find in Israel. We should be working together to build bridges, not more conflict and division. We’re here to make sure people see that.”
Artists 4 Israel uses street theater, graffiti, tattooing, fashion, and more to support Israel and build bridges through art.