Nazi swastikas and “Sub 2 PewDiePie” were sprayed on the side of the Cheney Secondary School in Oxford, UK, just a few days after a terrifying mass shooting at two mosques in New Zealand left at least 50 killed.
The graffiti was removed by council workers, with City Councillor Shaista Aziz saying that this cannot be dismissed as vandalism.
“I am horrified in the context of the New Zealand attack where 50 people were massacred, you can’t ignore the reference. […] Hate crime is not isolated and the problem must be talked about in this way to ensure it is not diminished. It is not good enough, in terms of what is happening in the city, to dismiss this as a random act of vandalism. It is racism”.
Social media users have been terrified and baffled by the fact that PewDiePie’s name has yet again been mentioned in the context of the New Zealand attacks:
Swastikas, @pewdiepie and other fascist slogans scrawled on the wall of an Oxford secondary school today. How frightening and awful.— Dr Sophie Duncan (@clamorousvoice) 17 марта 2019 г.
This is HORRIBLE. I hope that @OxfordCity gets the graffiti cleaned off/painted out before the kids turn up on Monday.— Lucia Nixon (@LuciaNixon) 16 марта 2019 г.
This happened at the secondary school next door to the uni campus I work at. We can’t keep pretending everything is ok https://t.co/R5AxYhydFo— Charlie Brampton (@maniccharlie) 16 марта 2019 г.
Home town in last 24 hrs.— Bibble (@JamilliaReign) 18 марта 2019 г.
Swastikas and pewdiepie.
From dank corners of net to school buildings. W.t.f? pic.twitter.com/9psrsk8cmi
@iPadechen Here is another one. In the past 7 to 10 days. Pewdiepie's supports got involved in defacing a WW memorial, shooting people in NZ and now racist graffiti. I dont know how this has started but someone has to stop this. https://t.co/xXFGAiqT8h— online.drjay (@ODrjay) 18 марта 2019 г.
The suspected gunman, Brenton Harrison Tarrant, went live as he drove to one of the Christchurch mosques, and recorded himself saying “Remember lads, subscribe to PewDiePie”, before going on a shooting rampage.
Upon hearing the reports of the shooting, the Swedish vlogger, who has been competing with the Indian channel T-Series for the status of most popular YouTuber, said he was “absolutely sickened” by the fact that the perpetrator had mentioned his name:
Just heard news of the devastating reports from New Zealand Christchurch.— ƿ૯ωძɿ૯ƿɿ૯ (@pewdiepie) 15 марта 2019 г.
I feel absolutely sickened having my name uttered by this person.
My heart and thoughts go out to the victims, families and everyone affected by this tragedy.
This is not the first time that PewDiePie’s name has been mentioned under controversial circumstances: earlier this month, unknown vandals used his moniker to deface a World War II monument at the Cadman Plaza in Brooklyn, NY.
Local media reports suggest that shortly before the shootings, he published a “manifesto” in which he claimed that white people were failing to reproduce, thus being replaced by the “non-European population” following mass immigration.
In the reported “manifesto”, he explained that he wanted to “take revenge” for Europeans who lost their lives in terror attacks, and added that his actions were inspired by a 2017 trip to France, where he saw what he described as an “invasion of France by non-whites”.