Thursday, June 21, 2012

BDS hits Cirque Du Soleil by Qatari Activists Over Tel Aviv Show

So, Cirque du Soleil is coming to Doha, Qatar. Okay. Fine. Then I see this petition. Wait, what??There is a call for a boycott of Cirque de Soleil by Qatari activists because they will be playing in Israel after Qatar. Excuse me, but this smacks of extreme hypocrisy and these folks have a LOT of nerve!!

 Now, while in Qatar, CdS will be playing in a venue built by virtual slave labor, people who can't even afford a ticket to go into the venue, and even if they could they would most likely not be allowed in the venue. This is a place where workers are segregated from the rest of society, stuck in labour camps. If you have never been in one of these camps, trust me, they are often truly horrible slums. Human Rights Watch just published an extensive, scathing review of the issue! This is a country where outsiders cannot get citizenship, where residence permits can be taken away at anytime and people can be deported, where you need an exit permit to be able to leave the country, and they can be denied for any reason. Unions are banned and workers rights are minimal. Domestic work is overused, exploited and often face sexual and physical abuse. Escaping from this abuse can get you in serious trouble for "absconding". Racism towards Asians is very common. This is not a democratic country. Homosexuality is illegal. I could even, theoretically, end up in jail for writing this if it is perceived to be insulting to the government, and most definitely if I were to insult Islam. Protest and decent is not allowed (although there have been some regulated protests that happen to correspond with national interests).

Does anyone else see the hypocrisy here? This infuriates me. It's not that I support all of what Israel does. I don't. I believe in speaking out against their actions when they do wrong (and likewise pointing out when they do right). BUT, I most definitely believe that this campaign is ridiculous, at best. Come on! Look at your own country! Look at what is happening here! Can you not see? Are you so blinded by the constant focus on Palestine/Israel to see what is happening right here?? Sadly, YES, that is too often the case. The question should be, should Cirque du Soleil even play here in Qatar.

1 comment:

  1. i could not have put it in a better way ... good job! we need more people speaking out about the hypocrisy in this country.