Current Affairs

Michelle Shocked to return to San Francisco during Pride Week, to clarify her feelings following anti-gay rant

Joseph McCormick June 19, 2013
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Several months after Michelle Shocked alarmed fans at a San Francisco gig by going on an anti-gay rant, during which she said “god hates fags”, the country singer has been invited back to perform, and to have the chance to really explain what she meant.

During an intimate gig at Yoshi’s in San Francisco in March, born-again Christian Shocked told the audience she “hates fags” and that same-sex marriage would bring about the “end of the world.”

51-year-old Shocked went into a “full hate speech” said one attendee, Matt Penfield, leaving audience members in disgust.

Appearing on Piers Morgan since, Shocked apologised for the rant, but claimed that she was attempting to present the “reality” of the situation to the audience who were not “ready” to hear it.

Todd Vogt, president and publisher of the San Francisco Examiner, said he, and several other smaller newspapers, had invited Shocked to perform a free concert, in order to clarify her position, after he turned down her request to take out an advert in the paper.

He said he did not think the advert would appropriate, and feared that it would express homophobic beliefs.

“For all the money in the world, we weren’t going to take some hate-mongering homophobic ad,” he said.

“But then she said, no, she really wanted to apologise and clarify what exactly happened at Yoshi’s,” he continued. “So we talked, and we decided the only way we’d do this is if you’d come to San Francisco, put on a free show, be honest and up front about it. She spoke to her people and decided to do it.”

He said the performance was booked for 30 June, but that he was still negotiating with venues, reports CBS. He continued to say he was unsure whether Shocked would turn up for the concert.

“We think this is a good thing for the city, the LGBT community, and an opportunity for Ms. Shocked to do a little mea culpa and face up to whatever she thinks,” Vogt said. “If she’s afforded the venue and she still can’t explain herself, then people can judge,” he said. 

Shocked has taken to Twitter recently tweeting strong support for Bradley Manning, strongly against “censorship”, and repeatedly tweeted a picture of herself wearing white dungarees, rainbow tie-dye and a hat with lights on, which she called her “world’s greatest homophobe” costume.

Following her outburst, Shocked said in a statement that she believed her comments were misinterpreted. She said: “I do not, nor have I ever, said or believed that God hates homosexuals (or anyone else). I said that some of His followers believe that.”

She responded to the cancellation of dates of her tour following a recent show, by turning up at a venue anyway and staging a sit-in.

Related topics: Americas, anti-gay speech, country singer, gig, hate speech, matt penfield, michelle shocked, performance, San Francisco, singer, US, yoshi's

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