In the wake of a recent string of gay teen suicides linked to bullying, one of the most famous celebrity bullies, Perez Hilton, has just declared he will tone down his hateful rhetoric. After almost two weeks of reflection, Hilton posted a tearful YouTube video on October 13 for fans in which he took personal responsibility for name-calling and being “part of the problem.”
“Over the last week and a half, a lot of people have said that I am a hypocrite and that I am one of the biggest bullies out there,” Hilton said. “And, there is truth to that – I have, on my website, said things that have been hurtful to people... and in the past I would justify everything as comedy and humor and these are celebrities but I don't want to have to justify what I do anymore. I don't want to continue things as they are.”
Talk about a steep hill to climb: Hilton is widely known for his vulgar sexual references, photos, and profanity-laced rants about any and all newsworthy celebrities. Take his public battle with Carrie Prejean for example.
Hilton was a judge at the 2009 Miss USA Pageant, and asked Miss
As if that's not bad enough, Hilton stepped up the attack on Prejean in a follow-up interview with MSNBC after the airing of the Miss USA pageant. “I don't apologize” Hilton quipped. “Over the course of the past 24 hours, the more I've thought about it, the more – you know what? – No, I'm going to stand by what I said just like she's standing by what she said. And I called her the 'b' word, and hey, I was thinking the 'c' word.”
Perezhilton.com, his pop culture and celebrity-bashing website is where he displays his “artwork” which has included phallic images drawn onto celebrity faces. Frequently, celebrity images are tarnished with his alterations that, in the past, have included graphic oral sex acts.
But apparently, all of the above was the old Perez Hilton.
“I need to be the change that I want to see,” Hilton said in his latest video. “I need to be the solution, and not part of the problem…. I need to change, and I'm going to, starting today…I still want to be me and be fun and be sassy… and also without being malicious and hurtful …starting today, things will be different on my website.”
And Hilton addressed the fact that this change will likely result in a decrease in traffic to his website. “Would my traffic go down?” Hilton asked himself. “Even if it does, I don't care because this is really important to me.”
Hilton is not the only vocal celebrity about the recent gay teen bullying. In the last two weeks, many left-wing celebrities have appeared on YouTube videos to show support of gay teens that may be contemplating suicide. The "It Gets Better" project attracted famous faces such as Ellen Degeneres, Neil Patrick Harris, and Kathy Hilton.