On Monday night, folk singer Michelle Shocked appeared at a San Francisco venue and went off on a bizarre, purportedly anti-gay rant. Now Shocked has issued an apology for her statements and claims that she was taken out of context.
According to CNN, Shocked claimed her words were taken out of context, and that she harbors no judgment against homosexuals.
"I do not, nor have I ever, said or believed that God hates homosexuals (or anyone else). I said that some of His followers believe that," she said.
As previously reported by IBTimes, Shocked went on an anti-gay onstage tirade during a performance at Yoshi’s in San Francisco on Sunday. One of the most shocking quotes involves her opinion that gay marriage would lead to downfall of civilization saying, “When they stop Prop 8 and force priests at gunpoint to marry gays, it will be the downfall of civilization, and Jesus will come back.”
Shocked also stated that fans should go on Twitter and write that “Michelle Shocked says god hates f*gs.” She later claimed that this was not indicative of her actual views on homosexuality and she was poking fun at the perceived Internet backlash to her rant.
While no video has surfaced of Shocked’s rant, which occurred during her second set at Yoshi’s, the backlash from the anti-gay remarks were almost immediate as many venues canceled her performances. Her tour was scheduled to perform at 11 more venues, but so far, nine have canceled her upcoming performances.
Yoshi’s stated that they had no idea she would be making such statements and that she was never allowed back at the venue.
“This was Michelle Shock[ed]'s third visit to Yoshi's San Francisco; her first was March 2009. She has never given any indication that she is anti-gay or racist in her previous plays. She obviously has some serious issues and unfortunately chose our venue to vent them,” a Yoshi's rep told the New York Daily News.
“We at Yoshi’s SF do not & will not ever tolerate the type of bigotry & hatred exhibited last night by @MShocked,” Yoshi's tweeted on Monday. “She will never be back.”
Read Shocked’s entire statement below, courtesy of Paste magazine.
“I do not, nor have I ever, said or believed that God hates homosexuals (or anyone else). I said that some of His followers believe that. I believe intolerance comes from fear, and these folks are genuinely scared. When I said "Twitter that Michelle Shocked says “God hates faggots,” I was predicting the absurd way my description of, my apology for, the intolerant would no doubt be misinterpreted. The show was all music, and the audience tweets said they enjoyed it. The commentary came about ten minutes later, in the encore.
“And to those fans who are disappointed by what they’ve heard or think I said, I’m very sorry: I don’t always express myself as clearly as I should. But don’t believe everything you read on facebook or twitter. My view of homosexualtiy has changed not one iota. I judge not. And my statement equating repeal of Prop 8 with the coming of the End Times was neither literal nor ironic: it was a description of how some folks – not me – feel about gay marriage.
“The show, and the rant, was spontaneous. As for those applauding my so-called stance that “God Hates Faggots,” I say they should be met with mercy, not hate. And I hope that what remains of my audience will meet that intolerance with understanding, even of those who might hate them.
“Folks wonder about my sexuality, but denying being gay is like saying I never beat my husband. My sexuality is not at issue. What is being questioned is my support for the LGBT community, and that has never wavered. Music and activism have always been part of my work and my journey, which I hope and intend to continue. I’d like to say this was a publicity stunt, but I’m really not that clever, and I’m definitely not that cynical.
“But I am damn sorry. If I could repeat the evening, I would make a clearer distinction between a set of beliefs I abhor, and my human sympathy for the folks who hold them. I say this not because I want to look better. I have no wish to hide my faults, and – clearly – I couldn’t if I tried.”
Eric Brown is an IBTimes political reporter who eats far too much pizza. He is a graduate of Mercer University in Macon, Georgia, and currently resides in Brooklyn.