Gemma Chan called out The Sunday Times for making light of Prince Philip’s “casual racism” in its coverage of his death.
The “Raya and the Last Dragon” star shared a “particularly irresponsible” excerpt from the British newspaper’s front-page story on Instagram Monday.
Following Prince Philip’s funeral Saturday (he died April 9 at age 99), The Times’ reporter Christina Lamb remembered the royal as “an often crotchety figure, offending people with gaffes about slitty eyes, even if secretly we rather enjoyed them.”
“The fact that this was written by a journalist who should know better, approved by editors and sent to print,” Chan, 38, wrote. “To trivialize casual racism in the most widely read Sunday broadsheet at a point when the Asian diaspora is experiencing a surge of attacks is deeply irresponsible.”
Prince Philip was ‘gaffe-prone’:The offensive things he said during royal life
Prince Philip,Duke of Edinburgh, husband of Queen Elizabeth II, dies at 99
According to The Independent – which recently published a list of 90 of the late royal’s notorious gaffes – Prince Philip once told a British student in China in 1986: “If you stay here much longer, you will go home with slitty eyes.”
Chan said The Times’ article highlights the need for “more people of color in newsrooms.”
“I am disappointed and hope if it was a mistake you are able to apologize and learn from it,” Chan added on Twitter. She also urged her followers to sign a Change.org petition calling for The Times and Lamb to issue a “retraction + apology for anti-Asian racism.”
The petition has received over 22,000 signatures, as of Tuesday evening.
Alexi McCammond, Teen Vogue ‘part ways’ following backlash of past racist tweets
‘Reach out in any way to support’:Chrissy Teigen on ‘heartbreaking’ rise in anti-Asian attacks
On Tuesday, The Times’ editor Emma Tucker issued an apology for the publication appearing to “make light of Prince Philip’s racist comments about Chinese people.”
“This so-called ‘gaffe’ made by Prince Philip was a well-known aspect of his life story,” Tucker said in a statement to The Guardian. “The Sunday Times did not intend to condone it. It was noted by us on Saturday night that the sentence was offensive and it was not published in digital editions.”
Tucker added that Lamb, who wrote the article, “has spent her whole career reporting on discrimination and injustices against people in every part of the world and never intended to make light of his remark in any way.”
Jeannie Mai ‘filled with so much anger’ over rise of attacks on Asian Americans
The controversial article was published amid a recent wave of attacks against Asian Americans, including three March shootings at Atlanta-area spas that killed eight people, most of them women of Asian descent.
Stop AAPI Hate, a group that tracks acts of discrimination and xenophobia against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, found nearly 3,800 incidents of hate, discrimination or attacks on Asian Americans from March 2020 through February 2021.
There’s been a rise in anti-Asian attacks. Here’s how to be an ally to the community.