Sharon Osbourne apologises after criticism of The Talk racism discussion: ‘I panicked and got defensive’

Presenter was accused of ‘gaslighting’ her co-host while defending Piers Morgan on Wednesday’s show

Isobel Lewis
Friday 12 March 2021 09:39
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Sharon Osbourne tearfully defends Piers Morgan

Sharon Osbourne has apologised after social media users accused her of “weaponising white tears” during a discussion about racism on The Talk.

On Wednesday (9 March), the former X Factor judge appeared on the US talk show to discuss her support for Piers Morgan following his departure from Good Morning Britain.

During the segment, Osbourne became defensive, raising her voice at co-host Sheryl Underwood and saying: “I will ask you again Sheryl...  and don’t try and cry because if anyone should be crying, it should be me… You tell me where you have heard him say racist things.”

The clip went viral on Twitter, with many viewers accusing Osbourne of “gaslighting” her co-star.

“Behold Sharon Osbourne making it all about her, forcing the Black women around her to comfort her in her hour of victimhood,” one commenter wrote.

In a lengthy post shared on Twitter on Friday (12 March) morning, Osbourne said that she’d been “reflecting” on the incident and wanted to apologise to any Black viewers she had offended.

Read more: Piers Morgan speaks out on GMB return on petitions to reinstate him

“I have always been embraced with so much love & support from the black community & I have deep respect & love for the black community,” she wrote.

“To anyone of color that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry. I panicked, felt blindsided, got defensive & allowed my fear & horror of being accused of being racist take over.

“There are very few things that hurt my heart more than racism so to feel associated with that spun me fast! I am not perfect, I am still learning like the rest of us & will continue to learn, listen and do better.”

Read more: Alex Beresford says he ‘didn’t want’ Piers Morgan to quit

Osbourne then addressed her original tweet about Morgan, in which she wrote: “@piersmorgan 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.”

In her new apology, Osbourne 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 unintentionally I didn’t make that clear distinction.”

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