Sherri Shepherd apologizes for homophobic remarks: 'I embrace everybody'
After an interview with Fusion host Alicia Menendez last week in which she attempted to deny being anti-gay while still remarking on the perceived sinful nature of homosexuality, Shepherd used her time on "The View" on Tuesday (Jan. 21) to clarify her viewpoint further.
"Working on a talk show that's centered in the opinion business, there's been several things that I've shared in the press that have upset people, and typically I don't respond to the criticism," the co-host begins. "However, I'd like to say I'm truly sorry to anyone I've offended with the viewpoints I express on Alicia Menendez's Tonight on the Fusion network."
Shepherd asserts that her words were twisted by the press. "My interview was misrepresented, and only a portion of my comments were used as a headline to give the impression that I was condemning members of the LGBT community living in their own truth," she continues. "In the interview, I express I was raised as a child to have a certain set of beliefs, but my beliefs have evolved significantly as my own personal relationship with Christ has increased.
"I believe that love is the grace of all things and I have no desire to judge anybody by who they are," Shepherd adds. "I'm a person of compassion and anyone who knows me knows that I love, I accept, I embrace everybody who has love in their hearts. So I love you."
In her initial interview with Menendez, Shepherd was asked about the biggest misconception viewers have had of her during her six-year run on the ABC talk show. "I think people don't know my heart. I think people feel I'm very judgmental. I think people feel I'm very homophobic," she said. "If they knew me, and knew my heart. ... You grow up being a Christian and you grow up believing homosexuality is a sin; you're going to hell if you're a homosexual. This is something that they teach in churches. So it's something that I grew up believing.
"I might not agree with your lifestyle, but I love you," she continued. "You may not agree with my lifestyle, but you love me ... I don't say it's a choice. If you tell me, 'Sherri, I was born gay.' OK. I'm not gonna argue with you, because I can't tell you how you feel and what's going on inside. I'm trying to make it into heaven by the skin of my teeth ... I don't know who I'm gonna see. So if you tell me you're born [gay], I'm not gonna argue with you. And I absolutely respect you for that. I just ask that people respect how I feel, [I] respect how you feel and we can have a great dialogue."
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