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4-min read

Kevin Hart Steps Down as Oscars Host; LGBTQ Community and Twitter Divided Over 'Apology'

On Twitter, Hart apologized to the LGBTQ community for what he called "my insensitive words from my past."

Shantanu David | News18.com

Updated:December 7, 2018, 5:27 PM IST
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Kevin Hart Steps Down as Oscars Host; LGBTQ Community and Twitter Divided Over 'Apology'
Image: Reuters Pictures

US comedian and actor Kevin Hart abruptly withdrew from hosting the Oscars amid flak for past homophobic and anti-gay tweets.

Two days after announcing he had landed what he called a dream gig, Hart said that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences had told him to choose between apologizing for the tweets or losing the job. Hart said the tweets were from nearly a decade ago and that he has matured since then.

On Twitter, Hart apologized to the LGBTQ community for what he called "my insensitive words from my past." "I'm sorry that I hurt people," he added. "I am evolving and want to continue to do so. My goal is to bring people together not tear us apart. Much love & appreciation to the Academy. I hope we can meet again."

"I chose to pass on the apology. The reason why I passed is because I've addressed this several times," Hart, 39, said during a video posted to Instagram just two hours before announcing his decision to step down as the host of Hollywood's biggest night of the year.

"I've said who I am now versus who I was then. I've done it. I'm not going to continue to go back and tap into the days of old when I've moved on and I'm in a completely different place in my life," Hart said.

Clearly, that changed.

Hart had come under fire over homophobic comments he had made some years earlier, which led several keyboard critics to question his suitability as a host. At a time when professional and social relationships across countries and industries are coming under intense scrutiny, and even as gender and sexual identity issues are in a state of upheaval, as victims of assault and discrimination around the world become voices demanding real change and equality, organizations and people around the world are finally paying attention.

However, opinion is still divided over whether Hart's brief apology on Twitter made up for his previous seemingly enthusiastic participation in a culture of hate and prejudice.

Some people, while celebrating the swift response by the Academy to their protests, felt Hart could and should have said more.

Others, including several openly gay and queer celebrities like comedian Billy Eichner, were more appreciative of Hart's efforts and lauded his decision.

The Academy must now find a new host for the 91st Academy Awards in February.

(With agency inputs)

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