Jeremy Miller Slams Growing Pains Co-Star Kirk Cameron's Caroling Protests: 'Disappointed'
Jeremy Miller adds his name to the long list of people criticizing Kirk Cameron for his recent maskless Christmas carol protests.
On Friday, the 44-year-old actor slammed his former co-star Growing Pains, 50, after organizing two Christmas carol events protesting California's "stay-at-home" contract in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Miller, who played the younger brother of Cameron's character on the popular '80s sitcom, stated in an email to the New York Post that despite the rising number of COVID cases, he disagreed with Cameron's stance on hosting events .
"While I will always love my brother Kirk, I couldn't argue that he is holding these maskless events at a time when safety and concern for others are an extreme priority," he said. "I really couldn't be more disappointed in him."
RELATED: Candace Cameron Bure Denies Participation in Brother Kirk Cameron's Christmas Carol Protests
On Tuesday night, Cameron shared on his Instagram story a series of photos and videos of a Christmas carol at The Oaks mall in Thousand Oaks, California - a state where coronavirus cases continue to rise and tens of thousands of new cases are reported daily.
In the videos, dozens of participants were seen singing close together, many without a mask, defying the state mandate that everyone outside their home must wear face covering.
A Cameron representative told PEOPLE that the event was organized by parishioners and churches in the area, and that masks and social distancing were promoted. In a statement to PEOPLE, Cameron said that the Christmas carol should convey "hope and encouragement".
"During this terrible pandemic, people are craving hope and encouragement and we want to offer that to them ... We encourage attendees to wear masks and the freedom to socialize, but we will not deny our neighbors the opportunity to listen to Christmas carols to sing outside, however they choose, "he said. "Spirits have been lifted and people have been encouraged! This is America - the land of the free and the home of the brave."
Following the event, the mall issued a statement condemning the gathering as "irresponsible".
"We do not condone this irresponsible but constitutionally protected peaceful protest event. We share your concern and have notified the sheriff's office," said the statement, which was posted on Twitter. "We also reached out to the event planner to ask them not to use The Oaks as a venue."
Cameron attended a similar event last week and documented it on his social media page. He informed the followers that the group would "celebrate our God-given freedoms" to gather together.
"It's T-38 minutes for our peaceful Christmas carol protest," Cameron wrote an Instagram post before the event. "We will celebrate our God-given freedoms, our constitutional rights at this Christmas time to sing Christmas carols to gather, to gather, and to sing of the birth of our Savior."
Ventura County, where Thousand Oaks is located, is currently seeing an increase in coronavirus cases and remains subject to a regional home stay ordinance passed in early December.
On Monday, 303 COVID-19 patients were treated in hospitals across the county, three times as many as people with the virus who needed hospital care on December 1. Also on Monday, according to local information, the availability rate in the district's intensive care unit was 0 percent of the news channel, the VC Star.
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Last week, Cameron's co-star Tracey Gold in Growing Pains also expressed concern about the actor's choices.
"I'll get in touch with my dear brother Mike. @KirkCameron As your smarter sister, I want you to know that I disapprove," she wrote on Twitter at the time. "I'm worried about you, brother AND your family. Wear a mask. Stay home. Sing later."
Then, earlier this week, Cameron's real sister, Candace Cameron Bure, shared on social media that she hadn't participated in her brother's protests and tweeted, "I haven't been to any Christmas carol events lately by wearing larger guidelines a mask and social distance when I'm in public. "
Defending her brother against criticism he received on social media, the Full House star continued, "I don't appreciate the hideous tweets about my family, however. I believe respectful dialogue is key to being heard Be safe. "
Because information about the coronavirus pandemic changes rapidly, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our reporting. Some of the information in this story may have changed since it was published. For the latest information on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from WHO and local health authorities. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise funds for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a fundraiser run by GoFundMe.org that supports everything from frontline responders to families in need to organizations that help communities. For more information or to donate, click here.
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Candace Cameron Bure
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