Grey's Isaiah Washington issues lengthy apology for anti-gay comment
Troy Espera | January 22, 2007
NEW YORK, NY — The controversy over Grey's Anatomy co-star Isaiah Washington’s anti-gay comment boiled over Thursday as Washington bowed down to public pressure by issuing a lengthy apology after a sternly worded reprimand from ABC.
“We are greatly dismayed that Mr. Washington chose to use such inappropriate language at the Golden Globes, language that he himself deemed ‘unfortunate' in his previous public apology,” the network said in a statement.
“His actions are unacceptable and are being addressed,” the statement conclude.
Washington offered a lengthy public apology late Thursday afternoon for using the word "faggot" in reference to his co-star T.R. Knight, for the second time, reports the LA Times.
“No, I did not call [co-star] T.R. [Knight] a faggot,” Washington told reporters, according to the Associated Press. “Never happened, never happened.”
In his apology Thursday, Washington acknowledged “repeating the word Monday night.”
“I apologize to T.R., my colleagues, the fans of the show and especially the lesbian and gay community for using a word that is unacceptable in any context or circumstance. I marred what should have been a perfect night for everyone who works on Grey's Anatomy. I can neither defend nor explain my behavior. I can also no longer deny to myself that there are issues I obviously need to examine within my own soul, and I've asked for help.
"With one word, I've hurt everyone who has struggled for the respect so many of us take for granted," continued the statement, which was issued through Washington's publicist. "I welcome the chance to meet with leaders of the gay and lesbian community to apologize in person."
ABC said in its statement it has “a long-standing policy to maintain respectful workplaces” for its employees, adding that the network had “dealt with the original situation in October, and thought the issue resolved.”
The statements came a day after the president of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation demanded an apology from Washington. On Thursday, GLAAD president Neil Giuliano said he was encouraged by Washington's latest remarks.
GLAAD President Neil Giuliano, who had called on Washington to apologize earlier this week, was encouraged by the actor's words and looked forward to meeting face-to-face with him next week, reports the Times.
"He's said that he's sorry and his statement reads sincere, we're going to take that on good faith," Giuliano told the Times. "It's a turning point for him personally and I'm looking at this as an opportunity to open up a dialogue about bigotry that still very much exists in this country."
The AP reports that Knight, who said soon after the October fracas that he is gay, appeared in Tuesday's taping of The Ellen DeGeneres Show to discuss the original incident and Washington's recent comments. “He referred to me as a faggot,” Knight said of the October incident. “Everyone heard it.” – Gay Link Content
Groups demanding apology, pink slip for Anatomy star’s gay slur