Paul McCartney calls on China to shut down wet markets after coronavirus pandemic

Paul McCartney calls on China to shut down wet markets after coronavirus pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has greatly impacted all of our lives, including celebrities. Everyone has responded to the crisis in their own way.

One music legend has reacted to COVID-19 by calling for action: to end the “wet markets” that sell wild animals as meat, which has been linked to the origin of the disease.

Paul McCartney is one of the most successful musicians of all time, from The Beatles to his incredibly successful solo career. But he is also one of the world’s most high-profile animal rights activists, and has been a vegetarian since 1975.

He’s been outspoken about many causes, from the meat industry to seal hunting, and now he’s speaking out against the Chinese wildlife trade.

China’s wet markets have long been decried as unethical: animals including cats and dogs are sold as meat. Many of these animals are stolen or strays, and they’re kept in poor and unsanitary conditions.

These markets have come under new fire recently, as the COVID-19 virus is thought to have originally transferred from a bat at a Wuhan wet market.

Paul Vasarhelyi /

In a recent SiriusXM interview with Howard Stern, McCartney was asked his thoughts on the issue, and he didn’t hold back.

“I really hope that this will mean that the Chinese government … will say, ‘OK, guys, we have really got to get super hygienic around here,’” McCartney said.

“Let’s face it, come on, it is a little bit medieval, eating bats.” 

McCartney blamed these markets for triggering a global pandemic.

“They might as well be, you know, letting off atomic bombs because this is affecting the whole world,” he said. “Whoever is responsible for this is at war with the world and itself; it just doesn’t make sense any sense at all.”

While these markets are sometimes defended as a long-standing custom or even tradition, McCartney wasn’t buying it: “They did slavery forever, too. You have to change things at some point.”

The good news is the coronavirus pandemic has so far led to some changes. The city of Shenzhen recently passed a ban on the consumption of animals like cats and dogs.


But until they’re all shut down for good, these animals are still at risk—and we’re all still in danger of another pandemic.

“They don’t need all of the people dying [for] these quite medieval practices,” McCartney said. “They just need to clean up their act. … This may lead to it. If this doesn’t, I don’t know what will.”

We’re with Paul — now is the time to put an end to these inhumane wet markets. Share if you agree!