Comic strip creator Scott Adams is facing major backlash following remarks he made calling Black Americans members of a “racist hate group” during an online video show.
A number of prominent media companies in the U.S., including the Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Times and The USA Today Network, have announced that they will drop Adams’ popular Dilbert comic strip from their publications, CBS News reports.
The comments made have been denounced as racist, hateful and discriminatory, with these outlets saying that they would no longer serve as platforms for his work.
Adams’ publisher is also withdrawing plans for a forthcoming book. Portfolio, a Penguin Random House imprint, said in a statement that it would “not be publishing ‘Reframe Your Brain’ by Scott Adams.” The book, which was scheduled to be in bookstores and online on Sept. 12, was marketed as a self-help title to help reframe one’s outlook with focus and repetition.
“I’m accepting criticism from anyone who has seen the full context here. The rest of you are in a fake news bubble, but I trust you suspected that” Adams tweeted about the fallout on Monday.
The backlash began after an episode of the YouTube show “Real Coffee with Scott Adams” aired this past week. Among other things, Adams mentioned a Rasmussen Reports poll where people were asked if they agreed with the statement “It’s OK to be White.”
While the majority agreed, Adams noted that 26% of Black respondents disagreed, and others were unsure.
Adams, who is white, repeatedly called Black people “hate group” or “racist hate group” members in the clip and declared he would no longer “help Black Americans.” “Get the hell away from Black people,” he urged white people.
Adams’ Dilbert comic distributor said it was cutting ties with the cartoonist. It had previously placed the comic strip, which has been syndicated for 34 years since 1989, in 2,000 publications based in 65 countries.
“As a media and communications company, AMU values free speech,” the top leaders of Andrews McMeel Universal said in a statement. “But we will never support any commentary rooted in discrimination or hate.”
Amid the backlash, Adams continued to defend his remarks, tweeting, “An obvious question for those who canceled me is do they disagree with my point. So far, I have not seen it. I only see disagreement with my use of hyperbole.”