Sorry Perez Hilton, I'm on Team Will.i.am
Update: Perez Hilton has just released another statement on his blog, apologising for using the anti-gay slur to the gay community. While it is a move in the right direction, I think his choice of words – and agression in the line referring to his former employers GLAAD – makes the apology come across as bitter and insincere. But that’s just me.
Ever heard of Perez Hilton?
Who hasn’t? And you guys have probably heard by now, the Perez Hilton vs Black Eyed Peas frontman Will.i.am.
But just in case you haven’t, here’s a quick recap (based on the various articles I’ve read on the website so I claim no responsibility for its accuracy – although the case is still being investigated although one person has been charge with assault). MTV has created a timeline of the events but I’ll give you a summary below anyway.
So apparently, the BEP had met Perez a few times before the fight, and Fergie had asked Perez why he’s been saying nasty things about their latest album The End (which is currently playing on my CD player, btw).
This went on for a few days and when they met again in Toronto, there was a war of words about Perez’s honesty (something about not writing anymore things on the website, but Perez said, “I didn’t say no, I said maybe.”). Then more words, Perez shouts, “You’re not a f***ing artist, you’re a f***ing f****t.” That was an anti-gay slur, by the way. It was even caught on video.
Then voices are raised. And apparently Perez Hilton was punched.
Now, I don’t condone violence (and I really don’t want to say that Perez asked for it), but really, how did you expect the person (or friends of the person) at the other end of the slur to react? Sure, we all don’t know what exactly transpired before but surely saying hateful words like that is a form of violence as well. And that if you were going to say something hateful, it is because you are instigating a response (whether to humiliate the other person, get him/her angry etc).
So, surely Perez should have expected a reaction?
Anyway, Perez originally accused Will.i.am of throwing the punch. In fact, he made a whole spectacle of it, logging on to Twitter telling everyone what happened (his side of the story) and asking people to call the cops. Er, if you have time to Tweet, don’t you have time to call the cops yourself? And if you were hoping that lots of people calling the cops would get them to you faster, surely you yourself calling and telling them how desperate you are in need of help would do the job.
It turned out later that it wasn’t Will.i.am who threw the punch, but instead it was BEP’s general manager who did. Oh, oh … lying much? Anyway, the GM has since turned himself in and is waiting for his time in court.
Of course, everyone is talking about it, and no group more than the people who don’t like Perez very much – the subject of his daily rants on his blog, Hollywood.
I love that @perezhilton uses his cellphone to log on to twitter to post a tweet to ask his followers to call the police for him.
But I liked the next one better:
Later on, the two would battle it out on Twitterverse, with John Mayer ending it with, “Good night Perez, you dumb shit.”
The Vancouver Sun has a good compilation of reactions from Hollywood which include:
Malcolm in the Middle’s Frankie Muniz jumped into the fray, posting “Perez Hilton, how do you call a man a f—-t right in his face and not expect to get hit?” …
She (Kirstie Alley) later followed that with a post saying, “Stop with the freakin ‘are you condoning violence’ s–t. Violence comes in many forms, not just black eyes. This b–ch’s tongue spews violence.”
Reality TV star and online phenomenon Tila Tequila dove in with more; “I find it ironic that Perez talks s–t about people all day long. He calls people f—–t yet bashes Miss California. Perez Hilton is a b–ch.”
The best part of the article, though in my opinion, was not the quotes above but the last two paragraphs in the article:
Upon seeing the number of people Twittering glee at his misfortune, Hilton posted, “I am honestly SHOCKED at the amount of people saying I deserved to be hit. Shame on you! NO. Violence is never the answer. NEVER.”
But apparently drawing penises on their photo and calling them a whore is a-okay.
And check out Kelly Clarkson laughing about it during a recent interview:
It is no surprise that Perez is much hated. But I will admit that even I do read his site sometimes. And I suppose the consumer has got to take part of the blame for his bitchiness as well. What we don’t have to take responsible for, however, is his choice of words to pass on hatred to Will.i.am.
He admitted himself, in a video statement, that his words were meant to spew hate.
“And that is when I made the split-second decision – that I was gonna say what I thought was the worst possible thing that thug [will.i.am] would ever want to hear. As I was standing my ground – without being violent or physical which I would never do – I told him – and you know what? I don’t need to respect you and you’re a f**. You’re gay and stop being such a f***ot.”
Now, that anti-gay slur is really bad but I don’t think it’s the “worst possible thing”. We Malaysians have swear words I think that are much worse (heh). Still, I do think that using such terms, especially in a derogatory manner, should be condemned. Which is why I was glad that GLAAD issued a statement requesting an apology from Perez for using a term that “feed a climate of hatred and intolerance toward our community”.
Perez first reacted with shock at the statement, and has since released another statement which sounds like regret but sensing the choice of words, doesn’t appear to be. GLAAD has also picked up on this non-apology, and released another statement not too long ago stating:
A statement that stops short of apologizing for and disavowing the use of that slur doesn’t get us where we need to be â€“ these are vulgar anti-gay slurs that feed a climate of hatred and intolerance that continues to put our community in harm’s way. When someone from our community uses a far-reaching media platform to promote these kinds of slurs, it sends a message that it’s OK to use these dehumanizing words.
Wonder if he will respond back. Or leave things as they are. There is talk that Perez is going to seek legal remedy, and try to even see if Will.i.am instructed the manager to punch him. I wonder how much this will affect Perez’s popularity? There is already a petition, which refers to him as a “hate-monger” to remove him as a nominee for the Teen Choice Awards. Then again, his whole “celebritydom” is built on hate, so what is a bit more.
I won’t be surprised though if this was a publicity stunt by Perez (I’m thinking the BEP don’t need the publicity as much as he is, plus they’d never work with him considering how he always calls Fergie “fugly” – she’s gorgeous!). Not surprisingly, only a few days before the incident happen, there was a report about an upcoming cleaner version of his celebrity site, to drive in more advertisers. “Snark-free”, The Telegraph described it. Only he would know I guess.
I’m gonna end this post with a video from Jimmy Kimmel Live – funny guy, that one – about the case. (Note: Boom Boom Pow is the BEP’s latest single).
Phew, this post sure took a long time to write. The more I was reading up on it, there more sites/videos/Twitter accounts/blogs I found myself reading. Good gosh. If this was a publicity ploy, it worked. And by posting this up, I feel for it.