Eric Clapton has penned an angry missive decrying the global response to the coronavirus pandemic, as well as pro-vaccine “propaganda” which he says overstates safety and effectiveness.
In questioning the British government’s response to the pandemic, Clapton said he “looked for heroes in the house.” He proceeded to name-check several COVID conspiracy theorists and anti-lockdown advocates, including fellow musician Van Morrison, who himself decried socially-distanced concerts as “pseudo-silence.” Clapton and Morrison eventually teamed up to record an anti-lockdown song called “Stand and Deliver” in 2020.
This past February, Clapton received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and “straight away had severe reactions which lasted ten days.” He claims his reaction to the second dose was even worse, as “my hands and feet were either frozen, numb or burning, and pretty much useless for two weeks, I feared I would never play again, (I suffer with peripheral neuropathy and should never have gone near the needle.) But the propaganda said the vaccine was safe for everyone….”
The experience led Clapton to question the safety and effectiveness of vaccines, and after encountering a group of like-minded anti-vaxxers, “I felt like a veil had been lifted, that I was no longer alone, that it was okay, in fact essential, to hold on to my intuition and follow my heart…”
“I continue to tread the path of passive rebellion and try to tow the line in order to be able to actively love my family, but it’s hard to bite my tongue with what I now know,” Clapton added.
In closing his letter, Clapton quoted lyrics from his second collaboration with Morrison, “Where Have All the Rebels Gone?”, which appears on Morrison’s new album, Latest Record Project Vol. 1. “It’s not aggressive or provocative, it just asks; Where have all the rebels gone? ‘Hiding behind their computer screens/ Where’s the spirit, where is the soul?/ Where have all the rebels gone?” Clapton recited. He added, “I’ve been a rebel all my life, against tyranny and arrogant authority, which is what we have now, but I also crave fellowship, compassion and love, and that I find here… I believe with these things we can prevail.”