Comedian Tracy Morgan returned to the city of the crime Tuesday to make his apologies to local gay rights groups and a few audience members from his June 3 show in Nashville.
"I don't have a hateful bone in my body," he said a press conference at the Nashville Convention Center, sponsored by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. “I totally feel that in my heart, I really don’t care who you love, same sex or not, as long as you have the ability to love.”
“I hurt people with this, so, from the bottom of my heart I apologize to everybody who I offended with my words,” Morgan said.
It was the latest in a string of Morgan’s mostly GLAAD-pushed apologies. Morgan visited the Ali Forney Center in NYC last Friday to meet with youth and families affected by homelessness and homophobic violence.
His pleas for forgiveness seem to be working.
“Tracy was sincere and spoke from his heart today," Kevin Rogers, the Ryman Auditorium audience member who wrote the original Facebook note that sparked wide reaction, said at the Nashville event, “Tracy was sincere and spoke from his heart today. I decided to speak out and use my voice to inspire others. The best thing that has come from this is a national conversation that anti-gay violence is unacceptable and that homophobia is outdated.”
At the Ali Forney event, Jayden Love and Raciel Castillo said, “We really appreciate that we were able to meet with Tracy Morgan, and that he was able to hear our stories of rejection at the hands of our own families and of being subsequently forced to survive on the streets."
"The Screen Actors Guild National LGBT Actors Committee appreciates Tracy's efforts to both learn from this experience and use this as a teachable moment. We fully support Tracy's message that discrimination has no place in today's society regardless of where it is practiced," said committee co-chair Jason Stuart in a press release.
Morgan next will be a participant in GLAAD’s upcoming “Amplify Your Voice” campaign, the organization said. He will join Russell Simmons, Rev. Al Sharpton, Kristin Chenoweth, Chaz Bono, Amy Poehler, Rashida Jones, Vinny Guadagnino, Tori Spelling and others to bring attention to issues of homophobic bullying and visibility.