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American Pop Singer Polls Fans on Boycott of 'Disgusting' Israel

Entertainment

"Stay or go?"

Emmy Award-winner Macy Gray has launched an informal poll of her fans on Facebook to determine whether she should cancel planned concerts in Tel Aviv because of the "disgusting" way she said the Israeli government treats Palestinians.

"I'm booked for 2 shows in TelAviv. I'm getting alot of letters from activists urging/begging me to boycott by NOT performing in protest of Apartheid against the Palestinians," Gray posted Monday.

"What the Israeli government is doing to the Palestinians is disgusting, but I wana go. I gotta lotta fans there I dont want to cancel on and I ...dont know how my NOT going changes anything. What do you think? Stay or go?" (sic)

According to Reuters, musical artists, entertainers and academics are under "increasing pressure" to boycott the Jewish state over Israeli-Palestinian relations.

But after more than 5,000 messages in response, Gray announced via Twitter that she would indeed sing in Tel Aviv next month.

"Dear Israel fans. Me and the band will be there in 20 days. Can't wait. See you then. Peace," she wrote.

If she had canceled her tour appearance, Gray wouldn't be the first artist to do so. British singer-songwriter Elvis Costello canceled planned concerts in Israel last summer over what he called "grave and complex" sensitivities. In addition, the American alternative rock group The Pixies canceled one of their tour stops in Israel last summer following the Gaza flotilla incident, claiming Israeli security forces' raid on a Turkish ship bound for Gaza had an impact far beyond the 15,000 disappointed fans, the New York Times reported.

“The decision was not reached easily,” the band said in a statement at the time. “We’d like to extend our deepest apologies to the fans, but events beyond all our control have conspired against us.”

Benny Dudkevitch, an Israeli radio editor and popular music historian, called the Pixies’ cancellation “a slap in the face.”

“We have waited so long for them,” he said. “It hurts.”

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