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James Arthur ‘very happy’ to work with Stonewall youth volunteers

  • BraveHeart

    Smart move dude. Do it ‘Arthur.’ Despite some nay sayers, I happen to believe this guy.

    • Ra

      What sane and healthy of mind adult allow a known homophobe court their children so he can prove he has changed his ways. This is like allowing the know sexual abuser babysit your children. (Extreme example, but to make the point.) He lost any right to work with LGBT teens and children when he spewed his hate. Working with adults would be fine, but stay away from the children.

    • Andy Diamond

      Another pseudonym by someone who comes here only to post about James Arthur.

      • BraveHeart

        Essentially, all individuals are entitled to express their view on this comment forum, regardless of the name choosen. What matters is forgiveness. As a gay person I have the right to support matters of equality and also JA.

  • Ra

    What sane and healthy of mind adult allows a known homophobe court their children so he can prove he has changed his ways. This is like allowing the know sexual abuser babysit your children. (Extreme example, but to make the point.) He lost any right to work with LGBT teens and children when he spewed his hate.

  • JonParker

    Oh good move Stonewall who else are you going to get to work with LGBT minors? Rick Perry? Jeremy Schwab? Linda Harvey?

  • GulliverUK

    I’m wondering if we should acknowledge that people can change to a more progressive view, through understanding, and yes perhaps because it hit his career plans, and being able to change is good. I’m not sure he is ready to explain his change of heart to young people – if his only understanding about why he changed his mind is it damaged his career, that’s not a great reason. Perhaps if he can talk to young people, perhaps meet some of the LGBT homeless and the shocking truth that they make up perhaps 40% of the homeless, chucked out or forced to leave in many cases by bad parents. Talking to young children about equality is a very skilled job, to convey the message with full impact. Probing questions like .. what if someone told you, you are not allowed to marry the person you love, or play sports, to become a teacher, or a priest, or if someone kept passing you over for promotion at work constantly, or someone said called you names, said horrible things about you, things which weren’t true, or said you couldn’t stay at their hotel, or refused to serve you in a shop, all because you were attracted to someone of the same sex, not the opposite sex, would that be fair. I think he’s saying laudable things, but I don’t think he really understands the subject matter enough, the range, the degree to which it can stifle someone’s whole life, their outlook and physical and mental well-being.

    • lee

      His changed very quickly -maybe the bank statement arrived and he now as become aware that making anti gay comments is NOT acceptable.

  • Grace hardy

    This conversation is getting boring. James Arthur is not, or ever has been homophobic. He made an ill considered use of the word queer in a rap battle for which he has apologised. Even Lucy Spraggan has openly admitted that she knows he isn’t gay, and so has his best mate Rylan Clarke. James knows all about the effects bullying can have on people, he has felt enough of it both at school and recently through the media and people who post on these sites.. He suffers from severe panic attacks because of it. He also knows about, and sympathises with, homeless people. he has shown this through his charity concert to raise money for crisis. I think he would be an excellent person to talk with young people on these subjects, particularly now that he realises how much he has unintentionally upset so many people with his childish use of the word queer, for which he has apologised many times over.

    • http://www.bloketoys.co.uk/ BlokeToys.co.uk

      So what does someone need to do to be considered homophobic? Kill someone? Beat them into a coma? Just harass them in the street? At what point do you consider hate speech and abusive language homophobic?

      People need to stop trying to redefine homophobia depending on how much they adore or fancy the person guilty of it.

      If he’d written lyrics about “N*ggers” or “K*kes” it would have been hate speech, but because it’s “just us gays” it’s somehow less offensive and an overreaction to criticize it?

      Grow the f up.

      • Grace hardy

        I’m sorry but I think you are the one that needs to grow up. He has not used what you call ‘hate’ speech, only one word that in terms of rap doesn’t mean the same, or at the least doesn’t carry the same weight. I’m not condoning the use, and nor is he. It was ill considered and very foolish. As to implying that I am biased because I might adore or fancy him, I find this offensive. I am a pensioner who does not like to see someone bullied over something that he has apologised for.

        • Andy Diamond

          Dear Grace, you need to grow seriously. Browsing the web and constantly commenting on articles about James Arthur is kind of an obsession obviously. That’s not healthy.

        • TomSatsuma

          STOP TELLING GAY PEOPLE WHEN NOT TO FEEL OFFENDED.

          You say calling someone a queer ‘doesn’t mean the same thing’ in rap. Bullshit.

          For a straight person to come here and lecture us – who have all grown up with homophobia – on what homophobia is, is both arrogant and offensive.

        • http://www.bloketoys.co.uk/ BlokeToys.co.uk

          So it’s okay for you to feel offended by my suggestion, but not okay for us as a collective group to feel offended by an ignorant fool like him using the most offensive words used to describe us, in public, to make money, influencing potentially millions of young minds to do the same?

          Glad we have that little hypocrisy sorted out!

          Context is important, I agree. For instance, Marilyn Manson using certain language in an effort to crate anger and encourage thought is not the same. Even Eminem using such language to tell a story is not the same. This is indeed about artistic context.

          In this mans case, there was no context, other than him using an offensive word to attack another person at our expense. The use of it was absolutely no different to someone using it in the street, or in employment, or in school, to attack someone else, thereby abusing an entire group of people in the process.

          You’re defending him with a very poor argument.

        • http://www.bloketoys.co.uk/ BlokeToys.co.uk

          “I am just a person who does not like to see someone bullied over something that he has apologised for.”

          No, you’re a person who created an account solely to defend James Arthur. That suggests a certain bias to everyone here who can see your commenting history.

    • AdrianT

      I sympathise with most of your comments but I don’t accept – and you cannot seriously believe what you write – that he has suffered bullying from posts on this site. No. He made some hateful lyrics and he was exposed for it, deservedly. What matters is if his attitude has changed. I give him credit for the efforts he is making. Is he serious about changing his name though? Not needed – a change of mind is what matters. Still, if he is serious about changing his name, then at least give us all a laugh and change it to Scargill Arthur or something.

    • Mike – Bath

      Oh please. Rather than realising he’d made a mistake and apologising, he laid into Lucy Spraggan and dismissed her concerns about that kind of hate speech. He ridiculed her for suggesting that kids attempt suicide over homophobic bullying.

      The result of his hate speech (yes it was hate speech), was his album sales plummeting, and iTunes offering refunds to those who wanted them. His career has suffered greatly as a result of his own actions. And that is the real reason he is putting on this show of remorse.

      Lets not forget that first he floated the idea of changing his name in an attempt to escape his deserved homophobe label. Only when he was called out on that cowardly attempt did he finally propose atoning for his homophobia by volunteering for a gay charity.

      There are many talented singers out there who deserve success. James Arthur isn’t one of them.

      • Grace hardy

        He was dismissing Lucy Spraggan’s concerns over her saying that calling an very offensive rapper Micky Worthless a queer would make kids go out and kill themselves. But enough of this foolishness. We are never going to agree. Lighten up and go and enjoy yourself instead of harbouring so much hatred for someone you have never met.

        • Mike – Bath

          Nope. Lucy Spraggan didn’t specifically say that his words to the rapper would make kids go and kill themselves. She said “people kill themselves every day over words like queer”. James Arthur even put those very words in quotes when he dismissed them. So please remove your head from James’ posterior and get a clue.

          No, mercifully I haven’t met James Arthur. But I can assure you that like many gays, I’ve experienced homophobia, and I certainly won’t “lighten up” when some pug ugly, talentless cretin spews hate speech. His contrition is merely an attempt to rescue his music career. Sadly for him, his 15 minutes are now up, and more talented, better looking, and less bigoted singers will supplant him in due course. Your adoration of this bigot won’t save his career. Nice try though.

          • Grace hardy

            “Pug ugly, talentless cretin” eh. I rest my case.

          • http://www.bloketoys.co.uk/ BlokeToys.co.uk

            Writing and then recording a track is not “heat of the moment”.

          • SilverFireFox77

            Hang on, you’re the one who came onto this website specifically for this article, of course you’re gonna find the odd name (not that I condone it, I really don’t) I mean, c’mon WHAT THE HELL ELSE WOULD YOU EXPECT considering it was THIS community, OUR community that he insulted?! Yeah, he’s now offering to volunteer with Stonewall but, seriously, he could have done that ages ago. Not now all of a sudden in a futile and, quite frankly, Pathetic attempt and distracting negative media attention.

          • Mike – Bath

            You have a point, Grace. I shouldn’t have called him pug ugly. I apologise. I won’t verbally harass you for pointing that out, and I won’t deny that that kind of hurtful language could cause some depressed kid to commit suicide. (in case you didn’t get it, You’re playing the part of Lucy Spraggan now, and I’m demonstrating how James Arthur should have reacted). It a shame James Arthur isn’t mature enough or intelligent enough to acknowledge when he’s wrong.

            As BlokeToys.co.uk pointed out, James Arthur’s hate speech wasn’t in the heat of the moment. He took his time to pen lyrics and music, and then sat down and recorded it, and then made it public. He had plenty of time to cool down and think about what he was actually saying. He chose not to. When he was taken to task about his homophobic language, he lashed out at Lucy Spraggan. Not only did he dismiss her concern about hate speech leading to suicides, but also personally attacked her.

            As SilverFireFox77 pointed out, all of this happened ages ago. Late November to be exact. We are now late July. A full 8 months after his hate speech. Why so long before offering to volunteer? You’d have to be pretty naive to think his offer to volunteer is because he wants to help. He only suggested volunteering for Stonewall AFTER he got criticised for wanting to erase those events by changing his name. His career has suffered greatly because of his homophobia, and now that he’s discovered that 8 months wasn’t enough time for people to forgive and forget, and after his attempt to erase his hate speech by changing his name failed, he has had to resort to the only thing that could potentially repair his reputation.

            I won’t deny people can change. But James Arthur’s actions in the past month haven’t demonstrated a change of heart. They’ve demonstrated a desire to rid himself of his “homophobe” label (two entirely separate motivations).Since the name change idea failed, he’s offered to volunteer. It’s clear that his motivation is to rehabilitate his public image and salvage his career, and not to atone for his hate speech. That’s why I have a problem with it.

            Additionally, I have a feeling that he’s hoping that offering to volunteer will be enough to breathe life back into his career, and he won’t actually go though with it (the likely excuse will be scheduling conflicts). I’m sure you think otherwise. Time will tell.

      • Rumbelow

        Lucy Whoggan? …again

    • Andy Diamond

      I wonder if it is the same hardcore fan posting the comments in defence of him or if it is James Arthur himself?! Judging by the articles I read he was very distraught by being called out by the media. So I wouldn’t wonder if he were posting here by himself using pseudonyms. Especially since Grade hardy has NEVER commented on any PinkNews article before other than articles discussing James Arthur.

      • Grace hardy

        He’s too busy.

    • lee

      How do you know what he thinks? STOP making excuses for for him. He MADE homophobic comments over a number of months.

    • Rumbelow

      Lucy Whoggan?

  • Jase

    Attacking the gay community has become a standard marketing strategy for self promotion in RAP.

    Don’t give this turd or anyone else using this marketing ploy, any free press. EMINEM used the gay community, learn from this people. Don’t encourage it.

  • UglyGeezer

    Leave the man alone. It was clear when all this happened he was in a bad space. Yes- he shouldn’t have said the things he did and yes he was out of order.

    The tweets look like an offer to be taught about homophobia and it’s impact from Stonewall from volunteers on the ground.

    When I was young, had I said racist remarks and other silly remarks in anger or in a dark place. Yes.

    Was I out of order? Yes.

    Did I learn from it? Yes.

    Am I a bigot? No, I grew.

    Cut the man some slack, we’re all idiots at some point in our lives and we all have the ability to change.

    • lee

      How do you know he was in a bad place? Im been in places I wouldn’t wish to see others in but I certainly didn’t go round making abusing and offensive comments. Stop making excuses for him. His made these comments over a long period of time.

      • JamesArthurFan

        On the contrary, he DID NOT make the comments over a long period of time! He said the two words “f__ing queer” ONCE in a rap song and they were aimed at someone who wasn’t gay. Please get your facts right! What you fail to comment on is that James continues to be good friends with Rylan Clarke and other gay people have said he is a good person. It’s plain to see he is not “homophobic”. The meaning of the word “homophobia” is “an extreme aversion to homosexuality”.
        Furthermore, he has openly admitted he made a mistake and said he is deeply sorry for it.
        It’s about time the emotional overreaction was replaced with a more objective view of the facts.

  • Gruffling

    So the guy has a track record of acting like scum, we’ve all read it. But if we can’t allow someone to admit their mistakes and offer to educate them on the impact of archaic attitudes and influence a more positive and accepting outlook in others, are we any less narrow minded than the bigots? It’s like saying let bigotry exist because there’s zero chance of people ever changing which just isn’t true.

  • Hantsm

    You really are an unforgiving bunch and no I am not James Arthur what on earth makes you think he would bother with people who only know how to bully.We come on here to give our opinion and we get attacked for it, how can you say he is anything but a human being have you met him or spent time with him? I am appalled at the viciousness on this site I always thought gay people were so much more understanding like my uncle an amazing gay guy and all his friends. I am a fan of James Arthur but I also have a mind of my own and I do believe he is not homophobic. Another thing we came to this site because it was all over the Internet not because we go looking for sites bullying JA that is rubbish! Anyway I just want to say how about some compassion here I am sure that no one on this site hasn’t at some time said something they regret and anyone who can say they haven’t must be a saint. He is a talented young man who just wants to sing give him a chance.

    • TomSatsuma

      I don’t want to compound your stereotypes of us all as nasty, but ‘I always thought gay people were so much more understanding like my uncle an amazing gay guy and all his friends’

      ‘Gay people’ are not understanding, vicious, amazing… etc. We are people. We are as understanding, vicious, amazing, etc as any other human.

      “I do believe he is not homophobic”

      Whether that is true or not he said some homophobic things, which was childish, wrong and harmful.

      Personally I’m not bothered any more – he’s obviously trying to make up for it and I doubt he’ll do it again.

      But I just wanted you to know that the “Ooh! I love gay guys – you are so FUN! Just like my gay uncle!” line is one we’ve heard so often it’s become a cliché, and it can be kind of insulting.

      • Hantsm

        My intention was not to offend and I apologise for that but going by some of the comments on here I wouldn’t say that some of these guys are not vicious ( eg. Pug ugly talentless cretin ) that is very derogatory don’t you think, and accusing us of being James Arthur writing under a different name seems very childish and very insulting to me personally. And I didn’t say ” Oooh I love gay guys -you are so fun” that is disparaging, gay or straight I like people for who they are not what they are.

        • Mike – Bath

          Just for you information, I used those terms to describe him in order to make a point.

          You find “Pug ugly talentless cretin” derogatory, yet find yourself on this site defending James Arthur for his even more offensive “F***ing Queer” lyrics. I feel I’ve succeeded in highlighting your hypocrisy.

          • Grace hardy

            I had no intention of defending his derogatory remarks and I am sorry if that is how it came across. Any bullying comments, whether it is to criticize someone’s sexual preferences, their physical appearance, their lack of talent, their religious faith or whatever else, is despicable, and can cause great upset to whoever is personally in the firing line. I was just trying to point out that we can all do it when roused and should be allowed to apologise and have that apology accepted.

          • JamesArthurFan

            Great, so you made a point. Good for you! By doing so, you have used terrible derogatory words that are fully intended to hurt and insult one particular person. What you fail to realize is that James used derogatory words unintentionally and did not aim them at any gay person.
            Furthermore, will you be dragged through hell; have your name tarnished in the media for the world to judge; be viciously criticised and hated for saying the derogatory words you said; and have your career placed at risk?? No you won’t. So I think your point is invalid.
            There are all kinds of derogatory words said all day every day about every kind of person, be they women, people of ethnic origin, people of whatever social status, religious or political orientation. If you are going to hate someone forever for unintentionally saying the words “f__cking queer” in a rap song, then you seriously need to get a grip.

    • Grace hardy

      Hear hear! May I refer all of you haters to Mike from Bath’s post where he calls JA “a pig ugly, talentless cretin”. I don’t find that acceptable language. Are gay people the only ones who are offended by bullying language? If you haven’t already heard the rap challenge that Micky Worthless sent to him, then I suggest you all go and listen to it on YouTube. OK, so he shouldn’t have retaliated in the way he did. But it was in anger and he is keen to learn from his mistake.

      • Mike – Bath

        I suggest you don’t look at the text messages James Arthur sends to women. I don’t think you’d find them acceptable. But then again, you’ll probably argue that those were sent in the heat of the moment too. Hypocrite.!

    • Andy Diamond

      Because this is a platform for LGBT related matters. And you use it as a platform for James Arthur. That’s what’s wrong here. And for what it’s worth, I think you defending him the way you do here is doing is reputation more harm than good. Because you argue and fight while Arthur is trying to save his reputation. You hardcore fans are doing exactly the opposite. By making excuses for him you are upsetting the readers on here.

      • Hantsm

        I am not fighting with you or anyone else and I am certainly not a hardcore fan as you call it, I just think that people can discuss things without being downright rude that is what I take offence to and if you don’t want us on your site then you shouldn’t put it out on the Internet as far as I can see Pink News is just another Media paper. One other thing I am not making excuses for James Arthur I am saying what I believe and I am entitled to my opinion the same as you

        • Andy Diamond

          I think when you come here to this site, which (again) is related to LGBT news and only comment on James Arthur articles, it means you are NOT interested in getting to know about the LGBT community. It means you only came here to defend James Arthur – that is your only purpose and intention. Can you not see that people on here would be annoyed by that? We have all collectively been insulted by James Arthur and I think it is just wrong to use this kind of message – no matter what the circumstances are (if you’re drunk, mad, whatever… I don’t care). There is no excuse for this kind of language, which leads to bullying. And considering that a lot of young LGBT people still commit suicide, it is heartbreaking. You are obviously not gay and do not understand, not can you imagine walking in our shoes. Believe me, the last thing we need is someone coming onto a site like this whose only intention is to defend a person who used this language. Is this so hard to understand?

          • Hantsm

            I lived with a gay person so don’t dare to tell me I do not understand I have seen how people can be and I would defend anyone who was being attacked in the papers straight or gay and as someone on this site said he didn’t say anything you don’t say to each other all the time. Go lo ok at the 2 rap videos concerned and then tell me he was getting at all gays it was a. Rap video one he shouldn’t have made but he did. As for suicdal young people they are not all gay I have lost a child to this so you think I don’t understand don’t even go there I live with fact every day

          • Andy Diamond

            Wow, I don’t believe how intolerant, insensitive and uneducated you are on this matter. First of all DON’T YOU DARE say you understand what it feels like when you are not LGBT yourself. It’s like a white person saying “I know what it feels like to be black.” No, you don’t. Saying this is simply arrogant. Also, there are statistics that say that suicide among LGBT people is higher than among the general population. Do you even understand how insensitive you are when you argue with a gay person saying you understand how he feels? And why do you even do this? Because you feel the need to defend James Arthur all day long! Don’t you understand that after what he said he will NEVER be respected by the majority of the LGBT community again – ever. It just won’t happen. He can apologize all day long, he can do charity projects, he can do Pride events. This ship has sailed… and sunk.

          • Hantsm

            Intolerant and insensitive are two words that I would say actually describes you, and I would not assume you are uneducated as I do not know you and I am probably not as well educated as yourself. But I do know unless you have lost a child you will never understand that soul destroying pain and it doesn’t matter what race you are. I am not gay and I am not black but I grew up being called a bastard because I didn’t know my father, so I do understand how cruel and insensitive others can be but I learned that if I treated others with kindness it was returned to me. James Arthur is trying to right a wrong but you will never allow that therefore I bow to you and your community and wish you well.

  • temp

    To all the critics of this guy I have to ask? Have you never made a mistake in your life or thought one way to change your mind with additional information. That surely is the sign of an adult who lives makes mistakes, gets additional information and changes for the better. Actually to me that is all of us.

    If you have a fixed view then you are closed to change, to the ability to change yourself and your surroundings. Let his show us by his actions he has changed.

    My Parents were against gays until I came out and they met my friends. They have two gay neices. My Parents changed. I change all the time embracing new concepts in politics, business and society.

    Keep an open mind please. Give the guy a chance please.

  • Aaron

    The thing that concerns me is how easy it is to make amends for saying these things.There has to be a point where they stick. It’s not to say people can’t change or regret using homophobic language but I get fed up with celebrities using anti-gay slurs and then apologising and everyone is supposed to say “oh that’s okay then”.

    It may be unfortunate for James Arthur’s career but homophobia will always be the ‘go to’ slur if it’s so easily forgiven. We can’t keep on forgiving and acting like it doesn’t matter. If we do it’ll keep on happening. There needs to be some (fairly) high profile people whose careers are damaged by it. I don’t want calling someone q**** or f******* to be just something people say because all they have to do is apologise afterwards and then all is forgiven.

  • http://www.bloketoys.co.uk/ BlokeToys.co.uk

    Wow, just look at all the brand new commenters, people who created new accounts just to defend him, or just to up-vote the other comments!

    It’s almost as though Mr. Arthur finally hired a PR company to do some damage limitation.

  • Billy

    Wow! Bigotry from those who have fought so hard to stop bigotry towards our own community?.

    • Mike – Bath

      Not tolerating the intolerance of others isn’t intolerance. Get a grip.

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