We knew it was going to happen, and here it is. Tracy Morgan’s “I love the gays, seriously” tour has commenced. Several weeks ago, while performing a stand-up act in Nashville, Tracy went on an obscene and offensive anti-gay rant. There was no video of the event, but a gay activist named Kevin Rogers was in the audience, and he wrote a scathing Facebook post about Tracy’s gig. The post went viral, and within 24 hours, Tina Fey and NBC had to issue statements about Tracy, and there was a lot of fallout from the gay community. Tracy later apologized, over and over to several outlets, and quickly made plans for what I like to think of as his Big Gay Tour. Today, Tracy was back in Nashville (Homophbia Ground Zero for Tracy, it seems), where he did a press conference/event with GLAAD, and this Kevin Rogers guy. Here’s some video and some coverage:
Tracy Morgan returned to the scene of the crime Tuesday. The 30 Rock star traveled to Nashville, Tennessee to personally apology to audience members and gay advocacy groups who were deeply offended by his vile anti-gay rant during his stand-up show there earlier this month.
After meeting with members of the gay community — including with audience member Kevin Rogers whose Facebook entry about Morgan’s act first cast a spotlight on the comedian’s comments — a contrite Morgan faced reporters at the Nashville Convention Center. (Rogers sat next to Morgan).
Morgan began by saying: “First thing I want to say is I apologize to Kevin and to people who were at the show for bumming them out. I want to apologize to my friends, and my family and my fans…. I didn’t know, I didn’t mean it…. I don’t have a hateful bone in my body. I don’t believe that anyone should be bullied or just made to feel bad about who they are… I really don’t care who you love, same sex or not, as long as you have the ability to love.”
During his June 3 show at Ryman Auditorium, Morgan said that homosexuality was a choice and that if own his son were gay, he would “pull out a knife and stab” him.
Speaking in Nashville on Tuesday, Morgan said he has the opportunity to change his message on stage and to make a difference.
“I don’t see gay or straight, I just see human beings,” he said. “From the bottom of my heart, I apologize.”
After the initial backlash for his remarks, Morgan was criticized not only by gay advocacy groups, but by NBC and 30 Rock creator Tina Fey. Since then, he has made several efforts to express his regret and has met with gay youth in New York City.
He has also agreed to record a PSA for GLAAD’s upcoming Amplify Your Voice campaign.
I said it before, in the previous post about Tracy’s “I love the gays” tour, and I’ll say it again: he’s handling this situation surprisingly well. He’s not playing the victim, he’s not trying to blame anyone or anything else. He’s taking responsibility and apologizing straight out, and asking for our forgiveness. He’s also putting some time and effort into his series of apologies, and I think he’s honestly trying to make it right. I’m not saying I’m back to loving Tracy’s usually delightful insanity, I’m just saying that I’m willing to hear him out and I like that he’s doing this apology tour in the right way.
Photos courtesy of WENN.