Kelly Clarkson Concert ‘Banned’ Under Islamic Law

Muslim organization Muhammadiyah has declared the upcoming Jakarta concert by US entertainer Kelly Clarkson as forbidden under Islam because it promotes smoking.

Yanuar Ilyas, head of the fatwa department at Muhammadiyah, Indonesia’s second largest Muslim organization, said as it had previously declared smoking haram (forbidden), all things related to it were also forbidden, adding that it was not necessary to issue a new fatwa (religious edict).

Kelly Clarkson doing her bit for the tobacco industry. The cigarette sponsorship of her upcoming concert in Jakarta has sparked debate and reminder from Muhammadiyah that smoking and anything associated with it is forbidden under Islamic law.

Kelly Clarkson doing her bit for the tobacco industry. The cigarette sponsorship of her upcoming concert in Jakarta has sparked debate and reminder from Muhammadiyah that smoking and anything associated with it is forbidden under Islamic law.

“We do not need to put another fatwa on a thing that is already clear,” Yanuar told the Jakarta Globe.

Yanuar also said that associating the famous singer with the cigarette brand L.A. Lights, was “a clear phenomenon that the cigarette company is attempting to recruit younger people.”

The ban will have little impact on the concert actually going ahead, however, with the vast majority of religious rulings ignored.

It will, however, create additional pressure those behind the concert to remove the offending advertising.

The concert promoters behind the controversial concert on April 29 say they are expecting to be able to release a statement on the issue later this afternoon.

The one-off event has sparked criticism after it was revealed it was being sponsored by the Djarum tobacco company and its brand of L.A. Light cigarettes.

A spokeswoman for promoters JAVA Musikindo said they were discussing the controversy and were expecting to make a statement soon.

Promoter Adrie Subono, however, did tweet on the social networking Web site Twitter, that “2,513 of my hairs fell out, I have a headache.”

The promoters have used Clarkson’s fame to erect giant banners and billboards depicting the singer’s image and advertising for the cancer-causing products.

The move drew sharp criticism from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids in the United states.

“If Kelly Clarkson goes ahead with the concert, she is by choice being a spokesman for the tobacco industry and helping them to market to children,” Group president Matt Myers was quoted by E! Online as saying.

“She has the power now to turn this situation around and to send a clear message to Indonesian young people and, frankly, to the young people of the world.”

As smoking has declined in many Western countries, it has risen in Indonesia — about 63 percent of all men light up and one-third of the overall population smokes, an increase of 26 percent since 1995. Smoking-related illnesses kill at least 200,000 annually in a nation of 235 million.

Discussion about the issue on the Jakarta Globe Facebook Web site generated considerable discussion, with many, though not all, against the advertising.

One participant, identified as Christopher Lingle, a Hong Kong-based professor, urged others to “ignore the health fascists.”

“Leave other people alone, even if their personal habits might cause them problems. Indonesians do not complain about how fat so many Americans are!” he wrote.

It is not the first time cigarette sponsorship has drawn controversy in the capital.

In 2008, Alicia Keys was forced to “apologize for any misleading advertising initially associated with the show” after Philip Morris International advertisements for its A Mild cigarettes appeared on promotional billboards and posters for her concert.

“I am an unyielding advocate for the well-being of children around the world and do not condone or endorse smoking,” she said. “I look forward to bringing my music and message to my wonderful fans in Jakarta.”

Clarkson is yet to comment on the latest controversy.

source: thejakartaglobe.com

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