Musician Pete Parada, drummer for The Offspring, announced Tuesday that he’s been dropped from the American rock band over his failure to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
“I’ve got some unfortunate and difficult news to share,” Parada, 48, wrote in a statement posted to Instagram. “Since I am unable to comply with what is increasingly becoming an industry mandate, it has recently been decided that I am unsafe to be around, in the studio, and on tour.”
Parada explained that his doctor advised him against the vaccine because he’s more susceptible to adverse side effects with Guillain-Barré syndrome, which “dates back to my childhood and has evolved to be progressively worse over my lifetime.”
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According to Mayo Clinic, Guillain-Barré syndrome is a rare disorder in which your body’s immune system attacks your nerves. Symptoms include weakness and tingling in your extremities.
“I caught the virus over a year ago, it was mild for me — so I am confident I’d be able to handle it again, but I’m not so certain I’d survive another post-vaccination round of Guillain-Barré Syndrome,” Parada wrote. “The shots carry a greater risk than the virus.”
Despite feeling “left behind” by The Offspring, Parada said he doesn’t harbor any “negative feelings” toward his former bandmates, adding, “they’re doing what they believe is best for them, while I am doing the same.”
“I want to share my story so that anyone else experiencing the agony and isolation of getting left behind right now – know they’re not entirely alone,” he wrote. “I hope we can learn to make room for all the perspectives and fears that are happening currently.”
USA TODAY has reached out to reps for the band for comment.
As COVID-19 cases surge, proof of vaccinations is starting to becoming a requirement for certain entertainment events, including music festivals. Starting Aug. 16, New York City will require proof of COVID-19 vaccination for people to enter indoor restaurants, gyms and entertainment venues, a move endorsed by President Joe Biden, who on Tuesday continued to push for more Americans to get vaccinated.
The Governor’s Ball music festival is scheduled to take place in New York City in late September.
Parada objected to allowing “those with the most power (government, corporations, organizations, employers) to dictate medical procedures to those with the least power.”
“I need to state, unequivocally, that I support informed consent — which necessitates choice unburdened by coercion,” he wrote. “I do not find it ethical or wise.”
Contributing: Jorge L. Ortiz, N’dea Yancey-Bragg
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