Gay comedian and actor Billy Eichner followed the entire whirlwind series of events from start to finish, and initially tweeting early Thursday that he's "ok with tasteless jokes" but was particularly bothered by Hart's tweets in question because "you can tell its not just a joke-there's real truth, anger & fear behind these."
"I hope Kevin's thinking has evolved since 2011," concluded while sharing an article about the backlash over the tweets and Hart deleting them. But when Hart shared his initial reaction to the backlash without any kind of apology, Eichner was peeved.
"This is not good. A simple, authentic apology showing any bit of understanding or remorse would have been so simple," he tweeted. "Like I tweeted a few weeks ago, Hollywood still has a real problem with gay men. On the surface it may not look like it. Underneath, it's far more complicated."
In Hart's first video responding the uproar over his tweets, he blamed the world "becoming beyond crazy,” and explained, "Guys, I'm almost 40 years old, if you don't believe people change, grow evolve as the get older, I don't know what to tell you. If you want to hold people in a position where they always have to justify or explain their past, then do you. I'm the wrong guy, man."
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"Halloween" star Jamie Lee Curtis, however, found Hart's response to be hypocritical. "Homophobia is not positivity," she Thursday evening. Gay YouTube star Tyler Oakley appreciated her pointing that out and replied to her tweet, "Thank YOU!"
Conan O'Brien's sidekick Andy Richter poked fun at Hart for saying he is "in love with the man that I am becoming," and tweeted instead, "The man I'm becoming just broke up with me! :-("
A few hours later, Hart shared another update: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences asked the comedian to apologize for his old tweets or step down as host, and Hart chose the latter. Eichner was floored.
"Wow. Just...wow. Does he realize he signed up to host the OSCARS?" the "Billy on the Street" host tweeted. "You wanna tweet 'jokes' about gay bashing your own son I guess that's your choice but at the very least, KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE!!!"
The story took another turn after Hart finally did apologize with two tweets:
"I have made the choice to step down from hosting this year's Oscar's....this is because I do not want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists. I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past. I'm sorry that I hurt people.. 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."
Eichner appreciated the gesture.
I'm no saint. We just wanted a little understanding, a little explanation. Apologies are tough - they leave you vulnerable. Toxic masculinity is real. I deal with it in my own way too. So on that note, I appreciate @KevinHart4real apologizing. And apology accepted. That's all.
Kevin Hart is a comedian, problem is he wasn't joking about gay people. He's long been problematic on LGBT comments and refuses to fully apologize & be an ally. If he has evolved so much an apology isn't that hard. (1)
(2) Homophobia shouldn't be rewarded, especially w so many queer comedians of color who could host the FUCK out of the oscars - or people of color who don't make violent homophobic & AIDS jokes albeit years ago but can't apologize w no qualifications when it's brought up.