Paris Jackson recently confirmed her sexuality, and drew accusations of hypocrisy for appearing on a magazine cover in Singapore, where being gay is criminalized.
Paris was called out by members of her own community for appearing to endorse a country whose laws regard her very existence as a crime.
Others rose to Paris’ defense, and she issued an apology.
After Gay Star News called out Paris on what they saw as a betrayal of the LGBTQ+ community by one of its own, Paris was quick to apologize.
“i didn’t know,” Paris tweeted, quoting the article. “i am sorry.”
“i was grateful for the opportunity,” Paris added, explaining why she had done the cover photo to begin with.
She is a young model. Despite her fame, she is 20 years old, and being on the cover of a magazine is still a big deal.
“But,” she said. “i’ll delete the post now.”
“i don’t want to be hypocritical or hurt anyone,” Paris continued on Twitter.
Of course she doesn’t! She’s a good person who always lends her voice to good causes and to marginalized communities.
“And my support for my fellow LGBTQ+ community comes first,” Paris affirmed. “Before my love for fashion and gratitude for this opportunity.”
It’s good that she has her priorities in order.
Paris finished that tweet with: “Again, i’m sorry.”
Paris had more thoughts, and it’s god that she shared them — because this is thought-provoking.
“I would like to add though,” Paris tweets. “That someone that is openly a part of the community being on the cover in a country against the community, should be celebrated.”
Representation is important, and a major first step towards acceptance.
Paris asks: “isn’t that a step forward?”
“Again,” Paris reiterates. “I am deeply sorry.”
Paris isn’t getting defensive, but she’s explaining why she took the gig and questioning some of the criticism, which is extremely fair.
“I didn’t mean to be hypocritical or hurt anyone,” Paris makes clear.
In a follow-up tweet, she does have one other line.
“Also,” Paris writes. “That article is ridiculously mean.”
That happens sometimes — some celebrities are nasty people. But is that sort of meanness deserved in Paris’ case?
Paris was on the cover of a magazine. If she were in an ad hyping up tourism for Singapore — or Dubai or, for some reason, Chechnya, this criticism would make a lot more sense.
But a magazine cover is not an endorsement of a country.
And representation can be so important. Paris heard supportive messages from countless fans, including the LGBTQ+ community and folks from Singapore.
When your own country’s laws are against you, seeing someone like you on a magazine cover can give you a spark of hope. Hope can mean survival.
It’s hard to see how Paris was doing a bad thing, there.