Ellen DeGeneres drops Kim Burrell performance following homophobic rant

A famed gospel singer who was set to perform with Pharrell Williams on the Ellen Show later this week has responded to criticism following a homophobic rant.

In a church sermon last week, pastor and singer Kim Burrell – who features on Pharrell track ‘I See A Victory’ – claimed that homosexuality is an “evil spirit” and that homosexuality is a perverted act.

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Burrell claimed: “Anybody in this room who is filled with the homosexual spirit, pray God to free you. You’re playing with it in 2017, you’ll die from it.

“That perverted, homosexual spirit is a spirit of delusion and confusion. If you, as a man, will open your mouth and take a man’s penis in your face, you are perverted.

“If you are a woman and you shake your breasts in another woman’s face, you are perverted.”

Pharrell has since responded to say he condemns hate speech “of any kind”, following widespread damning criticism of his collaborator.

Now Burrell has responded, defending her hate-speech in two Facebook videos posted following the criticism.

She says: “I never said ‘LGBT’ in the sermon. I said ‘S-I-N… I know that people are going to be mad. … To every person that is dealing with the homosexual spirit, that has it, I love you because God loves you. But God hates the sin in you and me, anything that is against the nature of God. I’m called to do what God called me to do, and that’s it, and I do it with passion. … I make no excuses or apologies.”

Adding in the second video: “I never said that all gays were going to hell. That never came out of my mouth. … I said people who operate with that spirit in the church with deception and attack themselves are going to have to face the master.”

Burrell had been set to appear on The Ellen Show this week to promote her track, which appears on the soundtrack of film Hidden Figures, stars of which have also spoken out to condemn the slurs.

DeGeneres, who famously came out decades ago, tweeted following questions over Burrell’s appearance on her show to say: “For those asking, Kim Burrell will not be appearing on my show.”

The film’s stars Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae both condemned the comments, after Pharrell also spoke out against hate speech.

Ms Spencer said: “We are all God’s children equal in his eyes. Hatred isn’t the answer. Intolerance isn’t the answer.”

Ms Monae added: “I unequivocally repudiate ANY AND ALL hateful comments against the LGBTQ community… we all belong to the same community, a shared community called humanity.

“Today and tomorrow and the next day I will continue to stand with other like minded people who condemn any and all statements and actions that would seek to deny the basic humanity of our fellow brothers and sisters.

“We cannot sit Idly by nor will we speak silently when we are confronted with such violence against members of our community. I am personally beyond exhausted by the ignorance and bigotry living in some people.

She added: “My advice: If your religion is causing you to spew out words of hate, judge, or look down on others because of who one loves then you need to change it. And fast. If the religion don’t make you are more loving or better person, ditch it.”