Celebrity chef, and former Channel 7 star, Pete Evans, has undoubtedly got very devoted fans. But even he may have found a way to repulse a fair few of them.
No, not because of posts about vaccinations; or expensive light machines that have “recipes for the Wuhan coronavirus”. But because of Donald Trump.
Yesterday, Evans posted a video of a speech by the US President about the recent protests following the death of George Floyd in police custody.
In the speech, Trump said states should “dominate the streets” with police and national guard troops to quell the violence. If they did not, Trump said he would send the US military in and “quickly solve the problem for them”.
The speech came during a controversial 24 hours for Trump who had been accused of being missing in action and then, when he did emerge, there were claims police fired tear gas at peaceful protesters to clear a path for the president so he could have a photo opportunity next to a Washington DC church.
Next to the video of the speech, uploaded to Evans’ Instagram, the chef didn’t write anything. He just let a single emoji so all the talking: a love heart.
It didn’t go down well with many of his followers.
“I’ve looked up to with your consistent messaging of peace and love. So, the fact that you’re endorsing this man and/or his fight fire with fire proposal is truly appalling,” said one.
“Listen to people of colour’s voices and experiences. Amplify their voices. Be an ally to them and use your platform for them just as much as you do for a misogynist who openly talks about women as objects, creates tension and divide as a leader on Twitter,” said another.
One fan pondered if “Pete has got stuck” suggesting that while he encouraged people to “go deeper” he needed to “go higher” given his support of Trump.
“I disagree strongly with your support of Trump,” said another. “As such I am unfollowing”.
“I followed Pete because I agree with him on the nutrition/vaccine etc. (But) I don’t know how Trump is in the good guys gang?”
Evans did respond to at least one comment, where he was asked why he seemed to be focused on Trump who has popped up in his Instagram feed on more than one occasion.
“Why are you obsessing on a narcissistic war monger? You are inciting by default a war between your followers.”
Evans replied: “I am not doing anything other than sharing information that may not be seen through normal channels. How you interpret is based on your beliefs”.
However, the speech that Trump gave about the US unrest was heavily reported on in the media and shown on television.
In April, Evans was slapped with $25,000 fine for spruiking a so-called “bio charger” device that was a “hybrid subtle energy revitalisation platform”.
He claimed on a lifestream that the $14,990 machine contained, “a thousand different recipes and there’s a couple in there for the Wuhan coronavirus”.
In a statement announcing fine, the Therapeutic Goods Administration said “claims that the device could be used in relation to ‘Wuhan coronavirus’ … has no apparent foundation … which the TGA takes extremely seriously”.
TENSION BREWING ON EVANS’ INSTA
There has been increasing tension on Evan’s social media channels between his two different groups of followers.
There are those who are just there primarily for the food and those who are there for his views.
However, the food posts are now getting drowned out by others focused on conspiracy theories around coronavirus, his views on vaccinations, jabs at the media and vague invitations to “join the dots”.
One recent post stated if there was news of a celebrity having tested positive for coronavirus that was actually code that they were about to be secretly executed.
On his latest Trump post plenty of followers congratulated Evans. One noted the arrangement of the US flags behind the president and delved into another conspiracy theory regarding that.
Indeed, it’ll take a lot more than championing Trump to disappoint some of Evans’ fans. As one follower said: “Pete is generally correct and so I believe Pete”.