Bryan Adams faces backlash over ‘racist’ social media post

Canadian rocker faces accusations of making anti-Chinese comments in his online rant. (Facebook pic/Bryan Adams)

OTTAWA: Canadian rocker Bryan Adams faced a backlash and accusations of anti-Chinese racism Tuesday over his online rant about the pandemic forcing the cancellation of his London shows this week.

The “Cuts Like a Knife” singer said in Twitter and Instagram posts that his gigs at the Royal Albert Hall were nixed thanks to “bat eating, wet market animal selling, virus making greedy bastards.”

He went on to say that “the whole world is now on hold, not to mention the thousands that have suffered or died from this virus,” admonishing the Chinese to “go vegan.”

While animal rights groups praised his call to stop eating meat, others interpreted the expletive-laced comments as anti-Chinese.

“This is so irresponsible and so racist,” Amy Go of the Chinese Canadian National Council for Social Justice told AFP.

“He’s a Canadian idol and he’s fanning the flames of anti-Chinese racism, and contributing to an increase in hateful taunts and blatant (physical) attacks on Chinese and Asian people in Canada and around the world,” she said.

Others called his remarks “racist garbage.”

Wet markets sell fresh food and produce, including farmed animals and wildlife.

One such market is Wuhan, China was identified last week by the World Health Organisation as having been a possible source or “amplifying setting” of the outbreak.

The recent rise of anti-Chinese rhetoric and violence linked to the pandemic is only anecdotal but there is a myriad of cases reported online.

Go cited, for example, the recent experience of a 92-year-old man thrown out of a Vancouver convenience store and onto the sidewalk by the shopkeeper simply because he is of Chinese descent.

A Chinese-Canadian woman was also punched in the face in an unprovoked attack while waiting last week at a downtown bus stop in the Pacific coast metropolis.

Adams has since deleted the tweet but his message remained on Instagram.

In it, he also said he missed his band or “other family” while in self-isolation with his wife and children.