Justin Bieber asks fans to take a stand against racism (Getty)
Justin Bieber asks fans to take a stand against racism (Getty)

Justin Bieber acknowledges using racial slur as a teen while asking fans to 'stand against racism'

Singer filmed using racist language on two occasions 

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Wednesday 04 December 2019 16:45

Justin Bieber has expressed regret over “hurtful” racist comments he made in the past while asking his Instagram followers to “stand against racism”.

On Tuesday, the Sorry singer uploaded an Instagram photo that reads “Stand Against Racism” in bold lettering. He captioned the photo: “When I was young I was uneducated and found myself saying really hurtful things not knowing the power of my words.

“Racism is still very prevalent and I want to use my voice to remind we are all human being [sic] and all of EQUAL VALUE BEFORE GOD!”

In a separate post shared hours earlier, the 25-year-old also acknowledged his “shortcomings,” while expressing his commitment to bettering himself.

“I’m determined this holiday season to take ownership of all my shortcomings and work on them for myself and the ones I love!” he captioned a picture of a Christmas tree illustration decorated with the name of his clothing line Drew. “What is your goal?”

Although he did not specify, Bieber’s posts may be in reference to two instances in which he was filmed using the N-word when he was 14 and 15.

In 2014, videos of the singer using the racial slur as part of the punchline of a joke when he was 15 were published by TMZ and The Sun.

In a second video obtained by TMZ, also from when Bieber was in his early teens, he could be heard singing the racial slur as part of his song One Less Lonely Girl.

After the videos were published, Bieber, then 20, issued a public apology on Twitter in which he explained that he “didn’t understand the power of certain words and how they can hurt”.

“As a young man, I didn’t understand the power of certain words and how they can hurt,” he said. “I thought it was okay to repeat hurtful words and jokes, but didn’t realise at the time that it wasn’t funny and that in fact my actions were continuing the ignorance.”

Explaining that he learned he had made a mistake from friends and family, he added: “Now that these mistakes from the past have become public I need to apologise again to all of those who I have offended.”

“I take my friendships with people of all cultures very seriously and I apologise for offending or hurting anyone with my childish and inexcusable mistake,” he continued. “I was a kid then and I am a man now who knows my responsibility to the world and to not make that mistake again.”

The singer concluded his former apology stating “ignorance has no place in our society” and that he hopes that sharing his faults “can prevent others from making the same mistake in the future.''

“Once again… I’m sorry,” he said.

In response to the Baby singer’s latest apology, his fans have thanked him for acknowledging his mistakes and using his platform to spread a positive message.

“It is powerful to admit mistakes and move towards change,” one person wrote, while another said: “Thank you for this.”

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