Clapton is a supporter of the Countryside Alliance which promotes issues relating to the British countryside. He has played in concerts to raise funds for the organisation and publicly opposed the Labour Party's ban on fox hunting with the 2004 Hunting Act. A spokesperson for Clapton said, "Eric supports the Countryside Alliance. He doesn't hunt himself, but does enjoy rural pursuits such as fishing and shooting sports. He supports the Alliance's pursuit to scrap the ban on the basis that he doesn't agree with the state's interference with people's private pursuits".
Controversy over remarks on immigration
On 5 August 1976, Clapton provoked an uproar and lingering controversy when he spoke out against increasing immigration during a concert in Birmingham. Visibly intoxicated, Clapton voiced his support of controversial political candidate Enoch Powell, and announced on stage that Britain was in danger of becoming a "black colony". Among other things, Clapton said "Keep Britain white!" which was at the time a National Front (NF) slogan. This incident, along with some controversial remarks made around the same time by David Bowie, as well as uses of Nazi-related imagery by Sid Vicious and Siouxsie Sioux, were the main catalysts for the creation of Rock Against Racism, with a concert on 30 April 1978.
In an interview from October 1976 with Sounds magazine, Clapton said that he was not a political person and that his rambling remarks that night were not appropriate. However, in a 2004 interview with Uncut, Clapton referred to Powell as "outrageously brave". He complained that the UK was "... inviting people in as cheap labour and then putting them in ghettos". In 2004, Clapton told an interviewer for Scotland on Sunday, "There's no way I could be a racist. It would make no sense". In his 2007 autobiography, Clapton called himself "deliberately oblivious to it all" and wrote, "I had never really understood or been directly affected by racial conflict ... when I listened to music, I was disinterested in where the players came from or what colour their skin was. Interesting, then, that 10 years later, I would be labelled a racist." In a December 2007 interview with Melvyn Bragg on The South Bank Show, Clapton reiterated his support for Enoch Powell and again denied that Powell's views were racist.