In 2011, Blake Shelton tweeted: “Wish the dickhead in the next room would either shut or learn some English so I would at least know what he’s planning to bomb!!” That tweet and others – including one from 2009 in which he wrote “If you haven’t noticed Richard Simmons is gay, you haven’t noticed Katy Perry’s boobs” – which some interpreted as racist and homophobic, resurfaced online this weekend, sparking a minor backlash.
Today, Shelton issued a statement apologizing for the tweets.
“Everyone knows comedy has been a major part of my career and it’s always been out there for anyone to see. That said anyone that knows me also knows I have no tolerance for hate of any kind or form,” he wrote. “Can my humor at times be inappropriate? Yes. Hateful? Never. That said I deeply apologize to anyone who may have been offended.”
Shelton is one of country music’s most popular personalities on Twitter, often punctuating tweets with “bitch” and claiming to be drunk. The approach has worked: the “She’s Got a Way With Words” singer has nearly 18 million followers.
Ironically, one of the tweets that landed Shelton in hot water referenced Ellen DeGeneres, who herself became embroiled in a Twitter controversy this week when she shared a photoshopped image of herself riding on the back of Olympic runner Usain Bolt. Tweeted Shelton in 2009, “I’m not gay but I think Ellen is hot! . . . Wait a minute. . . What?!”
Earlier today, Shelton also communicated with fans online, announcing via video that he’d be joining Luke Bryan for Bryan’s four-day Crash My Playa concert this January in Mexico.
Blake Shelton traded insults with Westboro Baptist Church. Watch here.