Ariana Grande apologises after 'disgusting' joke about JonBenét Ramsey

Singer says she understands that joke was 'not at all funny' 

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Monday 29 July 2019 17:27 BST
Ariana Grande apologises for joke about JonBenét Ramsey (Getty)
Ariana Grande apologises for joke about JonBenét Ramsey (Getty)

Ariana Grande has apologised after a joke she made about a friend dressing as JonBenét Ramsey, a six-year-old who was murdered in 1996, for Halloween prompted backlash.

Over the weekend, Grande’s friend Doug Middlebrook shared a now-deleted Instagram photo of a magazine cover featuring the child pageant queen with the caption: “No one has done more covers.”

In the comments, which were screen-shotted and shared on social media, Grande wrote: “I can’t WAIT for this to be your Halloween look,” to which Middlebrook replied: “working on it already.”

On social media, the 7 Rings singer immediately faced criticism from fans over the joke, which many called “disgusting”.

Ramsey was found dead in her home in Boulder, Colorado on 26 December 1996. The widely followed case has never been solved.

“Wait WHAT?? An eight-year-old girl who was violently killed, strangled and suffocated cannot be anyone’s costume…” one person wrote.

Another said: “...I love Ariana but I can’t believe she said that. The poor child was brutally murdered in her own home and the fact that she can’t wait for her friend to make a Halloween costume like that is disgusting.”

In response to the backlash, Grande responded on Twitter, writing: “Yeah no I deleted it very quickly and understand that it’s not at all funny. This was out of pocket and I sincerely apologise.”

According to BuzzFeed, the pop star also shared a further explanation for her behaviour in a now-deleted tweet in which she said: “Sorry I’m so f***ed up.

“Dark jokes are a coping mechanism for me and yet I hate when other people make them. Thank y’all for being real and always helping me learn. I’m happy I have a fan base who’s not afraid to call me out on my shit. Love u.”

Despite the singer’s apology, people have continued to accuse her of problematic behaviour.

“Why does Ariana Grande get away with her problematic behaviour time and time again?” one person wrote on Twitter. “JonBenét is not a costume.”

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Another pointed out Grande’s joke about Ramsey is just the latest in a series of controversies surrounding the singer, who in 2015 shared a video apology after she was filmed licking doughnuts in a bakery and saying she “hates America”.

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