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Pharrell discusses Kim Burrell with Ellen after singer called gay people 'perverted'

DeGeneres announced this week that Burrell would not perform on her show

Roisin O'Connor
Friday 06 January 2017 11:54
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Pharrell discusses Kim Burrell with Ellen after gospel singer called gay people 'perverted'

Pharrell has appeared on Ellen DeGeneres's show to discuss homophobic comments made by gospel singer Kim Burrell.

Burrell, who was scheduled to perform a song from the film Hidden Figures alongside Pharrell, was the subject of a backlash after a video emerged of her using the word "perverted" in reference to gay people at a sermon she gave in Houston, Texas, according to the New York Times.

The sermon was reportedly taped at the Love & Liberty Fellowship Crurch and showed Burrell referring to the "perverted homosexual spirit".

Following an online backlash Burrell posted two videos via Facebook Live but did not take back her words, only saying that they had been misrepresented by her "enemies".

Pharrell appeared to respond to the criticism of Burrell by posting a tweet where he condemned "hate speech of any kind".

In the following videos Burrell said: "To every person who is dealing with the homosexual spirit, that has it, I love you and God loves you but God hates the sin in you and me. Anything that is against the nature of God.

"I make no excuses or apologies. My love is as pure as it comes."

DeGeneres announced on Tuesday this week that Burrell would not be performing and said that she did not want to give the singer a platform.

Instead, Pharrell came on the show to discuss love and acceptance in light of her comments.

"There's no space, there's no room for any kind of prejudice in 2017 and moving on," he said.

DeGeneres said that being discriminated against because of her sexual orientation had given her empathy when it came to showing love and acceptance towards others.

Pharrell is set to attend the Golden Globe awards on Sunday evening, where he has been nominated for Best Original Score alongside Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch for the film Hidden Figures.

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The film is based on the nonfiction book of the same name by Margot Lee Shetterly, and stars Taraji P Henson as Katherine Johnson - one of a team of African-American mathematician who provided NASA with crucial data needed to launch its first successful space missions.

Pharrell, who also worked as a producer on the film, penned the songs "Runnin'" - where he is featured on lead vocals - and "I See a Victory", sung by Burrell.

Speaking at the Variety Inclusion Summit in November he said: "The female contribution to society was not acknowledged like it should be. Women's contributions were often dismissed, discounted.

"The idea that we get a chance to go back and shine a light on the amazing accomplishments of these women - and African-American women, you know.

"It's one thing to be a woman in the 1960s. It's another thing to be an African American woman in the 1960s."

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