Eric Clapton made his opinion about the pandemic, lockdowns and vaccines very clear. In 2020 the famous guitarist released an anti-lockdown protest song, “Stand and Deliver,” along with Van Morrison. When the duo was faced with backlash from the song, Van Morrison blamed “lack of freedom of speech” for the backlash and went on to the defend the song. In the song the musicians call the UK “a police state” and further ask the audience if they want to be “a free man, or do you want to be a slave?”
Fast forward to today, when UK’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that by September everyone 18 and older should have a chance to get vaccinated and that nightclubs and venues will have to require proof of vaccination before allowing entry, according to Stereogum.
After the announcement, Clapton went on to post a statement as well. He did so via the Telegram channel of filmmaker Robin Monotti Graziadei, who is also known for being a COVID-19 skeptic. Clapton writes: “I wish to say that I will not perform on any stage where there is a discriminated audience present. Unless there is provision made for all people to attend, I reserve the right to cancel the show.” In May, Clapton wrote a lengthy letter about his thoughts and claims on lockdowns, “Pro-vaccine propaganda” and his reaction to the AstraZeneca vaccine. Monotti released this letter on his Telegram channel as well.
The closed messaging app is popular amongst anti-vaxxers and other conspiracy theorists, especially in the UK and Europe. Just last month it was reported that an anti-vax group sent death threats to BBC journalists via the app.