Kelly Clarkson Calls Indonesian Cigarette Controversy a 'Lose-Lose Situation'
Kelly Clarkson is at the center of controversy again, but is using her personal blog to speak out about the matter. On Wednesday, the singer posted an entry regarding the recent debate over billboards that promoted the pop star's upcoming concert in Jakarta, Indonesia, using logos from the popular cigarette brand, L.A. Lights.
"So... my morning began with finding out that I am all over billboards, TV ads, and other media formats alongside a tobacco company who unbeknown-st to me is sponsoring my Jakarta date on my current tour," she writes. "I was not made aware of this and am in no way an advocate or an ambassador for youth smoking."
"Unfortunately, my only option at this point was to cancel the show in order to stop the sponsorship," she says. "However, I can't justify penalizing my fans for someone else's oversight. This is a lose-lose situation for me and I am not happy about it but the damage has been done and I refuse to cancel on my fans."
The controversy has also taken an emotional toll on the Clarkson, who adds, "I think the hardest part of situations like this is getting personally attacked for something I was completely unaware of and being used as some kind of political pawn."
In Indonesia, tobacco companies are free to advertise their products on TV shows, billboards, Web sites and other media. L.A. Lights is owned by Djarum, the third-largest Indonesian cigarette manufacturer. The advertisements have caused public debate amongst Indonesia's Muslim community, whose second-largest Islamic organization, Muhammadiyah, recently issued a fatwa banning smoking.
Clarkson's U.S. devotees are also divided, using Facebook as a means to express their opinions on the dispute. While plenty of fans have written messages of support, others have posted comments on the 'American Idol' star's wall condemning her for the sponsorship and offering personal stories of cigarette-related deaths. One user has even created a separate Facebook page petitioning Clarkson to drop the endorsement. The page currently has less than 200 followers. However, according to the pop star, she was unaware of the tobacco company's involvement with her concert in the Indonesian capital.
Clarkson has yet to confirm the cancellation of her Jakarta concert.
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