I missed this Robin Shepherd piece from last week’s Commentator, but the content remains valid, valuable, and worthy of your time:

One of America’s greatest musical and artistic talents, Alicia Keys, has shown the kind of moral and artistic integrity that is so sadly lacking among some of her more excitable contemporaries, (not to say clich├ęd windbags unable to break free from fashionable anti-intellectual prejudice against the Jewish state).

As the World Jewish Congress (WJC) is highlighting today, Ms Keys has refused to bow to pressure from characters such as Roger Waters, of Pink Floyd fame, and Alice Walker, a Pulitzer prize winning writer.

In response to a call to boycott Israel by cancelling a July 4 concert in Tel Aviv, the singer, song-writer, and actress said: “I look forward to my first visit to Israel. Music is a universal language that is meant to unify audiences in peace and love, and that is the spirit of our show.”

How could one disagree? Well, one could disagree if, instead of “peace and love”, one’s primary motivation was hatred and lies.

If people such as Waters and Walker can provide a better explanation for their calls they are quite welcome to explain them here on The Commentator. Indeed, I’ll go one better: why don’t Waters and Walker let me interview them about their behaviour? Surely they wouldn’t turn down a right to reply so as better to give their own version of events. (Would any reader care to ask them?)

Meanwhile, it’s Friday, which means people are going to be beheaded today in Saudi Arabia; it’s Friday in Syria, which means men, women and children will be slaughtered to protect the Assad despotism; and it’s Friday like any other Friday in much of the rest of the world where hundreds of millions live under oppressive regimes.

But why not just ignore all that and boycott Israel, one of the most advanced democracies in the world?

Alicia Keys has explained why not, and that’s a great reason for writing to thank her for her decency, and for going out and buying one of her records today.

Robin Shepherd nails it.