“Mumford & Sons” banjo player and lead guitarist announced Tuesday that he will be stepping away from the band and offered an apology after he faced backlash for a now-deleted tweet promoting a book from reporter Andy Ngo.
“I have offended not only a lot of people I don’t know, but also those closest to me, including my bandmates and for that I am truly sorry,” Winston Marshall posted in a tweet, adding, “As a result of my actions I am taking time away from the band to examine my blindspots.”
Marshall praised Ngo over the weekend on the publication of his book “Unmasked,” which offers a look “inside ANTIFA’s radical plan to destroy democracy.”
“Finally had the time to read your important book. You’re a brave man,” the musical talent tweeted.
Ngo is known for his on-the-ground reporting of violent left-wing group Antifa in cities such as Portland. Antifa has routinely targeted Ngo over his work; he’s been physically assaulted, doxxed, and had his home visited at night by apparent Antifa activists wearing printouts of Ngo’s face as masks.
Marshall was called a “Nazi” who “likes fascist propaganda” by critics of the post, The Hollywood Reporter outlined Sunday:
One user wrote in a similarly-deleted reply to Marshall’s tweet, “I may be naive, but “Banjo player from Mumford & Sons Comes Out As Nazi” was not a headline I foresaw…”
There were also calls to fire Marshall from the band. “One of my favorite bands is trending bc the banjo player once again made it clear he likes fascist propaganda. He’s not representative of the whole band, but the silence from Mumford & Sons on this has gone on too long. #AdoptANewBanjoPlayer,” one user tweeted.
“Over the past few days I have come to better understand the pain caused by the book I endorsed,” Marshall said Tuesday in a statement. “I have offended not only a lot of people I don’t know, but also those closest to me, including my bandmates and for that I am truly sorry.”
“As a result of my actions I am taking time away from the band to examine my blindspots,” he announced. “For now, please know that I realise how my endorsements have the potential to be viewed as approvals of hateful, divisive behavior. I apologize, as this was not at all my intention.”
— Winston Marshall (@MrWinMarshall) March 10, 2021
According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Mumford & Sons” in 2018 invited Canadian academic Jordan Peterson to visit their London studios. After backlash, Marshall told a Canadian radio station, “I don’t think that having a photograph with someone means you agree with everything they say. … Primarily I’m interested in his psychological stuff, which I find very interesting.”
On top of the left-wing backlash, Marshall was hit by both classical liberals and conservatives for caving to Cancel Culture:
I know it is difficult to be courageous instead of cowardly but how disappointing to see you cave to these disgusting bullies.
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) March 10, 2021
You have nothing to apologize for. You supported a journalist who reports on crime. You were mobbed by censorious fascists. https://t.co/C1PdzqKGTZ
— Barrett Wilson (@BarrettWilson6) March 10, 2021
The apologizers are a huge part of the problem. Their weakness and sycophancy is harming the country. Apologizing to the mob is wrong, and people who do it deserve our criticism. https://t.co/OLrgwOfrXv
— Noah Pollak (@NoahPollak) March 10, 2021
You just rekt yourself, bro. It was a good run, I guess.
— James Lindsay, super-antiracist (@ConceptualJames) March 10, 2021
Winston did this on purpose to give @MrAndyNgo proof of what he was saying in his book about Antifa
It's a far right conspiracy meant to make you fear innocent masked activists who seek peace through violence https://t.co/MRyDq1GMOV
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) March 10, 2021
There is no reason to apologize for reading a book. https://t.co/yCE0QVGa1s
— Alana Mastrangelo (@ARmastrangelo) March 10, 2021
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) March 10, 2021