Sharon Osbourne has issued a grovelling apology after “weaponising her whiteness” in defence of Piers Morgan over his Meghan Markle comments.
Osbourne took to Twitter to defend Morgan on Tuesday (9 March), writing: “Piers Morgan I am with you. I stand by you. People forget that you’re paid for your opinion and that you’re just speaking your truth.”
Osbourne later appeared on her show The Talk, and turned on co-host Sheryl Underwood who asked her to explain her support of Morgan, aggressively telling her not to cry and declaring: “I’m not racist and neither is Piers racist.”
She has now issued a public apology, writing on Twitter: “After some reflection, after sitting with your comments and sitting with my heart, I would like to address the discussion on The Talk this past Wednesday.
“I have always been embraced with so much love and support from the Black community and I have deep respect and love for the Black community.
“To anyone of colour that I offended and/ or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry.”
Osbourne said she was “panicked” and “blindsided”, and allowed her “fear and horror of being being accused of being racist to take over”.
She continued: “Please hear me when I say I do not condone racism, misogyny or bullying. I should have been more specific about that in my tweet. I will always support freedom of speech, but now I see how I unintentionally didn’t make that clear distinction.
“I hope we can collectively continue to learn from each other and from ourselves so we can all continue to pave the way for much needed growth and change.”
Sharon Osbourne was accused of ‘weaponising her whiteness’ after her comments on The Talk.
Trying to explain her defence of Piers Morgan on her show The Talk on Wednesday (10 March), Sharon Osbourne quickly became emotional and defensive.
She said: “Why is it that because I supported a longtime friend and work colleague for years, people go, ‘Well you must be racist because he’s racist’. I support his freedom of speech. I’m not racist and neither is Piers racist.”
She then turned on co-host Sheryl Underwood, who tried to remind her of the “racial implications” of Morgan’s comments, yelling: “I will ask you again Sheryl… And don’t try and cry, because if anyone should be crying it should be me.
“This is the situation. You tell me where you have heard him say [racist things]. Educate me! Tell me when you have heard him say racist things. Educate me, tell me!”
The clip was widely shared, with many criticising Osbourne for “gaslighting” and her aggressive defensiveness.
Comedian Rae Sanni wrote: “This is Sharon Osbourne, telling a Black woman not to cry and demanding a definition of racism, as she sobs over Piers Morgan who walked off his job because a mixed Black co-worker calmly challenged his fixation on Meghan Markle. White women are something else. Your tears are weapons.”
But following her latest statement, many on social media are still not satisfied, explaining that she didn’t actually apologise for her actions, and calling for a direct apology to Underwood.
Lawyer and activist Dr Shola Mos-Shogamimu shared Osbourne’s apology and wrote: “Sharon – weaponising your whiteness and white woman’s tears with such arrogance in your ignorance of racism as [a] power construct didn’t deserve Sheryl’s measured response.
“I would’ve verbally eviscerated you… Where’s [the] public apology to Sheryl?”
“You’ve been in the American public eye for far too long to think what you said was at all appropriate.”
Morgan quit his role as host of the breakfast show Good Morning Britain on Tuesday (9 March), following backlash to his comments about Markle and her interview with Oprah Winfrey.
During the interview, the duchess said she had experienced suicidal thoughts during the media witch hunt following her marriage to Prince Harry, and detailed how the palace failed to support her while she was experiencing racist abuse, but Morgan declared that he did not “believe a word” she had said.