Whoopi Goldberg has come to the defence of Justin Bieber after a five-year-old video of the pop star using the N-word surfaced. The View co-host excused the singer's use of racist language because he's Canadian.
"A video has surfaced, or resurfaced, of a 15-year-old Bieber telling a racist joke, and everybody's up in arms. He's issued an apology saying he was too young to understand — and he's Canadian. There's a reason I say this," explained Goldberg on "The View" on June 2. "You know, Canadian words — I'm going to say the word so get ready to beep me. N—-r doesn't mean anything in Canada."
Co-host Sherri Shepherd responded by asking, "what does it mean in Canada? Groceries?"
"Black Canadians and black Americans are two separate groups of people," Goldberg elaborated. "And how do I know this? Well, I did a movie last year, in Canada. And a young, wonderful Canadian woman wrote it, and I'm reading it and I'm thinking, 'We would never say a thing like this,'" said Goldberg.
"So I went to the director and I said, 'what is this?' And he said, 'oh, she lives here.' And I said, 'so she doesn't know anything, she doesn't get what we're talking about. So we had to make adjustments, and that's just the way it is."
"I don't mean to say Canadians have been throwing it around. I don't think, that when they hear the songs everyone is playing, and every other word is n----," she said, getting back to Bieber. "What I'm saying is that, when you are 15 and you're someplace where that's not a word that you have associated with people of colour, they weren't calling them that."
Needless to say, there was considerable backlash on Twitter, prompting Goldberg to respond to angry Canadians:
However one feels about Goldberg's belief that the N-word is not hurtful in Canada, which it most certainly is, it should be noted that she made the comments on after the first racist Bieber video leaked, in which he tells a joke that includes the N-word, and had apologized.
Since then, a second video has surfaced in which Bieber jokes about joining the KKK and killing back people while changing the lyrics of "One Less Lonely Girl" to "One Less Lonely N------."
Goldberg has not made further comments since that second video came out on June 4.
(H/T National Post)