Fellow TV host Piers Morgan has attacked BBC2 presenter Jeremy Clarkson for a tweet he sent last night containing a picture of himself with a sign saying “gay c*nt”.
Morgan, now based in the US, tweeted to criticise the Top Gear presenter for the tweet, noting his “flabby neck”.
Clarkson tweeted the image featuring fellow Top Gear host James May, along with the caption “Sadly, I fell asleep on the plane.”
He later tweeted an apology which said: “I have deleted my last tweet and would like to apologise profusely to anyone who I upset while I was asleep.”
Morgan sent the tweet shortly after the original was posted, before it was deleted by Clarkson.
Embracing homophobic slurs with your petrol-head mates @JeremyClarkson ? And you have the brass flabby neck to call ME a ****? Wow.
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) January 16, 2014
When someone called Morgan a “moron”, suggesting that Clarkson was asleep when the tweet was sent, he responded: “Not when he tweeted and then deleted it”.
Then when a user told him: “It’s called sense of humour piers, you should try and get one loser”, he simply responded to say: “I don’t find gay slurs funny, sorry.”
This is the latest in clashes between Morgan and Clarkson, who are embroiled in a long-running Twitter feud. Clarkson often boasts of having punched Morgan.
Clarkson, who is paid £1 million a year by the BBC, was nominated for Stonewall’s Bigot of the Year award in 2007 for refusing to apologise after being reprimanded by BBC bosses for derogatory gay jibes on primetime TV.
He told an audience member that he would not buy a car because it was “a bit gay” and “very ginger beer”, which is rhyming slang for “queer”.
In 2010, former Labour spin doctor Alastair Campbell said that when he appeared on Top Gear, Clarkson made a joke about not wanting to be “bummed” by gay people. The joke was cut from the broadcast show.
Then in 2011, Clarkson got himself into a spat with gay singer George Michael, who called him a “pig-ugly homophobic tw*t”.
At time of publication Clarkson’s photograph had been retweeted over 26,000 times.
Former Radio 1 presenter Chris Moyles was attacked by LGBT groups in June 2006 for calling a ringtone “gay”, and was ruled to have breached the broadcasting code in 2009 for comments he made about gay singer Will Young which sparked outrage and dozens of complaints to the BBC.
The BBC recently defended its decision to include clips of Graham Norton wearing a red ribbon on the presenter’s 2013 compilation show –even though he was previously reprimanded by the corporation for doing so.
Norton ignored instructions not to wear the ribbon on his programme on 29 November to highlight last year’s World AIDS Day on 1 December. Clarkson appeared as a guest on the show in question.
The BBC did not immediately respond to a request for a statement from PinkNews.