Alec Baldwin quits Twitter over Gillian Anderson backlash

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Alec Baldwin has quit Twitter after backlash over a tweet about Gillian Anderson's American accent.

The 62-year-old actor responded to criticism on the social media site after he reposted a news story about 'The Crown' actress - who was born in the US and grew up in the UK and the States - using an American accent as she accepted her Golden Globe award for her role as Margaret Thatcher.

Alec - who previously defended his wife Hilaria Baldwin for switching her own accent between Spanish and American - tweeted: "Switching accents? That sounds... fascinating."

Now, in a lengthy Instagram video he has explained his decision to step away from Twitter.

He said: "Wanted to post a quick video to say that I deactivated my Twitter account today... I just wrote, 'Oh, that's interesting.'

"And of course, you can't do any irony on Twitter—you can't do any irony in the United States anymore because the United States is such [an] uptight, stressed-out place and such an unpleasant place right now."

Alec insisted the social media platform is "where all the a******s go".

He continued: "I find that, of course, on Twitter - which is where all the a******s in the United States and beyond go to get their advanced degrees in a******-iness, that I had used it as a news aggregator - and I suppose I will do my best to find other places that are similar in their news aggregation in real time and periodicals I like."

Back in January, the 'Saturday Night Live' star seemingly referenced the claims that his wife Hilaria had been misrepresenting her heritage as he spoke out about the "ridiculous" things he has read on social media, just hours after Twitter trolls targeted his spouse over her cultural background.

He said at the time: "You have to kind of hack your way through the debris of Twitter. Twitter is just a vast orchard of c***.

"There's things that have been said lately about people that I love, that I care about deeply, which are ridiculous. I mean, just ridiculous. They've said it about people I love - false things. Untrue things."

Hilaria had previously revealed she is teaching her children to be bilingual so they can understand and embrace her Spanish heritage, after people slammed her story.

She wrote: "A bit about me. I’ve seen chatter online questioning my identity and culture. This is something I take very seriously, and for those who are asking - I’ll reiterate my story, as I’ve done many times before. I was born in Boston and grew up spending time with my family between Massachusetts and Spain. My parents and sibling live in Spain and I chose to live here, in the USA. We celebrate both cultures in our home - Alec and I are raising our children bilingual, just as I was raised. This is very important to me. I understand that my story is a little different, but it is mine, and I’m very proud of it."