Tracy Morgan issues apology for homophobic rant, says it 'clearly went too far'


Image Credit: Albert L. Ortega/PR Photos

30 Rock actor Tracy Morgan has issued an apology to fans and the gay and lesbian community for an anti-gay rant during his weekend gig at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium that has landed him in hot water.

“I want to apologize to my fans and the gay & lesbian community for my choice of words at my recent stand-up act in Nashville. I’m not a hateful person and don’t condone any kind of violence against others,” Morgan said in a statement. “While I am an equal opportunity jokester, and my friends know what is in my heart, even in a comedy club this clearly went too far and was not funny in any context.”

Nashville native Kevin Rogers, whose detailed account of the event on Facebook first grabbed media attention, spoke with EW earlier today and said he had gone to the show expecting a night of comedy, but left feeling “like the butt of the joke” after the 30 Rock actor launched into his tirade. “I can take a joke, but I absolutely did not expect a rant like this in the middle of a comedy act,” Rogers told EW via phone.

According to Rogers’ account, Morgan informed the audience “that the gays needed to quit being p—ies and not be whining about something as insignificant as bullying” and that “if his son that was gay he better come home and talk to him like a man…or he would pull out a knife and stab that little [n—–] to death.”

Rogers says before the rant, Morgan’s humor (specifically his comments about enjoying when women choke during oral sex) had proved too much for many audience members. But once Morgan launched into his anti-gay comments, more began to leave. Rogers said he stayed for the entire show. “I had to fight myself. I don’t really give in easily and I thought…if I stand up and leave, he wins. It shows him, ‘Hey, I got to you.’ He didn’t get to me. I wasn’t angry; I was just disappointed.I thought he was more intelligent than that,” he says.

GLAAD released a statement today calling for Morgan’s management to “investigate these allegations and should they prove true, we call on him to remove these violently anti-gay remarks from his show and send a strong message that anti-gay violence is not something to joke about.” Hours later, Morgan issued his apology.

A rep for Morgan’s 30 Rock boss, Tina Fey, a well known LGBT advocate, has not responded to a request for comment.

UPDATE: GLAAD released a statement this afternoon asking Morgan to “meet with family members who have lost children to anti-gay violence in order to help him understand exactly why his rant touched so deep a nerve.” “If Tracy Morgan is sincere, he should take us up on meeting these families who have lost loved ones to the type of violence that he is mocking. Perhaps by hearing their stories, he will learn that while we all love humor, this is no laughing matter,” said GLAAD President Jarrett Barrio.

UPDATE II: NBC and Tina Fey react to Morgan’s “disturbing” rant

UPDATE III: Chris Rock defends Tracy Morgan; GLAAD fires back

More Tracy Morgan:
TNT apologizes for Tracy Morgan’s crude Sarah Palin remark

Tracy Morgan has more choice words for Sarah Palin
Tracy Morgan on his controversial new autobiography

Comments (355 total) Add your comment
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  • Bebe

    “I thought he was more intelligent than that.”

    Have you LISTENED to Tracy Morgan speak before?? If so, the word “intelligent” wouldn’t be the first to come to mind.

    • Jay

      I know, right? Nobody who knows Tracy Morgan would think he was intelligent about ANYTHING.
      He can be funny on occasion, but never for a second in my life did I think he had an IQ over 20

      • James C.

        I figured the idiot act was an act — you have to actually have some cleverness about you to be that funny, and not simply an idiot. And his later statement shows he’s introspective and isn’t his character. But, as he said, his comments were way over the line. I remember as a kid watching Jay Leno say every Dad would be horrified to find out that their kid was gay, and then thinking for the first time that if I came out to my parents they might stop loving me. I can’t imagine what a kid might think after watching this act.

      • Tom

        This guy is a comedian, and that’s what they do. If he was up there, being serious about stuff, then yes it would have been wrong. I thought he was funny. Get over yourselves ppl.

      • True

        I’m with Tom. He’s a comedian. We can’t expect them to be PC.

      • Juneau

        Well a comedian should be funny – which he is not. He’s the reason 30 ROCK is losing viewers in droves. He’s just obnoxious. He could take lessons on funny from Alec and Tina. But anyone stupid enough to pay to see him deserves what they get.

      • AK

        @Tom and True: If you find “jokes” about killing gay people funny, then I think you seriously need to reconsider your sense of humor.

      • @ Juneau

        “He’s the reason 30 ROCK is losing viewers in droves.”

        False on both accounts. God it annoys me when people make absurd statement that are just made up.

      • Green

        Tom, imagine if someone said they wanted to stab African Americans to death just because they were black. People would go nuts. It’s the same thing, and just as offensive.

      • stu

        tracy=ghetto trash.

      • wtf

        what about dead baby jokes.. or wife beating jokes, jokes about every race on the damn planet… if you do not find jokes about killing gay people funny.. you need to seriously check to see if you HAVE a sense of humor. (probably wasnt very funny tho… tracy morgan isnt that great of a stand-up.) There probably wouldnt have been an problem if he said the same types of jokes but with better delivery and charisma. People need to grow up and stop taking life so damn seriously.

    • KC

      I am assuming this comment was made to spark controversy. I can’t imagine that a human being could possibly be this stupid??

    • Also From Chicago

      Please don’t publicize that you’re from Chicago. You’re embarrassing me. You should read a book.

    • Moss

      I would certainly not prefer to be born hetero- and to say that black people would prefer to be born white is the most racist thing I’ve heard in a long time.

    • Bryan Cornish

      Hey, Sally, what are you appearing in at the moment ? So me and my friends can avoid it….

    • pie thrower

      Sally, let me guess you write Hallmark cards don’t you????


    • crispy

      Nah, she really is that stupid. She’s been spewing this nonsense on EW for years.

    • umno

      hey SallyIdiot..I guess gay people and decent humans tolerate you…SHUT UP PLEASE…

      • Sylvanus

        how much would you charge rolhugy to get the car running if i bring u an evo with a motor that has cosworth cams, eagle rods and wiseco pistons on stock turbo. it doesnt run it needs a crankshaft, oil return lines and oil cooler. after that dyno tune the stock ecu?

    • Rob

      Thank goodness your an ‘actress’. I’m sure you say other peoples dialogue better than your own ramblings. I look forward to maybe watching you play an English teacher…now that’s ACTING!

    • SallyinChicago

      I am a total tool.

    • trufan

      So true, Bebe, So true! LOL

      • rerun

        Am I missing the video of what he said? Can’t really put anything into context or make a judgment of if it’s funny without seeing it.

      • anonymous

        “I had to fight myself. I don’t really give in easily …
        Oh Kevin, thanks for proving that you really are the butt of the joke.

    • wakeforce

      Wow, that Sally would broadcast her ignorant comments here just shows that this kind of attitude is still on full display in this society.
      If you thought that the Westboro Baptist church was just an anomaly, you’d be wrong.

    • E

      I’ve never seen a dumber comment in my life. I hope this was a 4Chan Troll for the sake of humanity.

    • geez

      Actually, his anti-gay comment was more disturbing than offensive.

      • jared4ever

        No doubt, anyone who mentions stabbing their own child, even in jest, has a screw loose.

      • Diane

        Agreed. His anti-gay comments are just as disturbing as his women/oral sex comments. What a disgusting pig!

      • AmericanExpatinUK

        The late, great Bernie Mac indicated he would “hit a kid in the throat” during the Kings of Comedy and it was one of the most hilarious segments of the comedy show.

      • Alex

        It was neither. It’s a joke. End of story. This just reiterates what the joke was about. Gay people are apparently unable to develop a sense of humor, which is odd considering their fashion choices. If Morgan had made the same joke about a straight kid GLAAD would have nothing to say about but all they see is hate. Hey GLAAD, he made a joke about you, therefore treating you like everybody else. Isn’t that what you guys wanted? Oh no I forgot, you want to have your cake and eat it too. Sorry folks not gonna happen. You can’t go prancing around with your (clearly) phony effeminate voice and then complain about not getting treated the same.

      • Me

        I don’t think the joke was particularly funny or smart or in good taste, but even I can see that he didn’t joke that he would kill a kid for being gay. He used hyperbole (ie exaggeration) to say, don’t come home and complain to me coz you’ll get it worse at home for WHINING – talk to me like a man. Same way Cosby once joked about his son “I brought you into this world and I can take you OUT” for misbehaving, or like someone above mentioned Bernie Mac talking about hitting a kid, or many African American comedians have joked about being beaten with a switch or a belt. He used exaggeration to say, in my community, you complain about bullying and we’ll beat your ass — not for being gay but for not standing up for yourself. I’d say it’s more a joke on African American families and violence, which comedians often joke about, than it is about being gay. But no, he didn’t execute that joke well at all, at all.

    • crispy

      So what you’re saying is you’d prefer not to be born dumb trailer trash?

    • Mike K

      That’s just ignorant to think because the guy is always in character that he’s not smart.

      • Laura

        Tracy Jordan is a spoiled, obnoxious, child on 30 Rock. It was cute and funny the first two seasons….then it got annoying. It must not be difficult for him to portray him.

    • TN

      I’m a huuuuge tracy morgan fan, ever since SNL. and as a gay man i appreciate a good/dirty gay joke, but when I read that guys account, it’s verrrrry clear it stopped being funny a few minutes into his gay tirade. I found what he said really nasty, and not in a fun comedy club way. I can not tell you how sad and disappointed i am in Tracy Morgan.

      • Don

        Keep in mind, when someone is up on stage in that capacity, they’re often taking huge risks on the fly. I’d say he was probably going for something that would offend some and raise eyebrows but overshot a bit.

        Even the best comics sometimes totally fall on their faces. Remember the time Bill Hicks was recording for an album and TOTALLY bombed?

        I’d put this down to a bit of sensationalism. Obviously Tracy Morgan decided that he had gone a bit far. People who are trying to be edgy comics have a fine line between the two, and sometimes they never know what will be considered “edgy” or “abhorrent” until they blurt it out and see how people react.

        I’d just say that I wish people would chill out about this. I’ve seen a lot of this sort of uptight politically correct behavior lately, and I don’t think it’s the making of anything positive. We need to laugh at ourselves, no matter who we are. Maybe if humans will learn to laugh at themselves, racism and other forms of bigotry will appear as rediculous as they really are. That was Don Rickle’s message. I don’t know anything about TM’s style, but people can be taken out of context.

    • Jen E.

      It’s true. You have to know when you buy tix to a TM standup, you’re not in for a night of clever wit.

      • Zane

        The press-release apology was actually funnier than anything Morgan has ever said in his stand-up act. Perhaps he should have his publicist write his jokes as well.

    • joblo

      So does Tracy get the Mel Gibson Shun Forever Treatment now? Or will there be some excuse for him to slip by?

      • Dominic

        I hope that. Was a huge fan until this but now…he makes my skin crawl.

    • shdrew

      I totally agree. I’ve never found Tracey Morgan funny at all. He just doesn’t do it for me. Chris Rock, on the other hand – a riot!

  • crispy

    “I thought he was more intelligent than that”
    Really? What would make you think that?

  • T2

    I didn’t know who this guy was before “Star” Jones brought him in on a Celebrity Apprentice task. He wasn’t funny then – and it seems that he’s not funny now.

    • KYLE

      Why did you put Star in quotes?
      That’s her name. Star is short for Starlet.

      • T2

        I put it in quotes because she is NOT a star, in any sense of the word.

    • Jen

      But it’s still her name.

  • KC

    I guess he won’t be opening for Lady Caca anytime soon…

    • Brad

      Lady Caca! That’s hilarious! Did you come up with that by yourself? NEVER heard it before! Please, next engage us with witty things like “Lady GayGay” and “Lady Gag Me.” SO FUNNY!

      • Aunt Sassy

        I love you Brad!

      • cheese

        my personal “favorite” has to be Lady BlahBlah. :/

      • Spike

        Sorry, Brad, we didn’t mean to demean your Diva. It’s just that some of us don’t feel like worshipping at the altar of some marketing creation that can’t sing and writes repetitive, cloying songs. She may have inventive costumes but I liked Gaga better the first time around…when it was called Grace Jones. Or Madonna. Or Roisin Murphy.

        As for TM, anyone who thought he wasn’t capable of this wasn’t paying attention.

      • AK

        Good lord, Spike. You don’t have to like Lady Gaga (and there are so many things about her not to!). But can we all please accept that she has a damn good voice and move on?

      • Anya

        Wait, why are we talking about Lady Gaga?

      • anonymous

        If the Goo Goo Dolls opened for Lady Gaga, it would be known as the Goo Goo Gaga tour.

    • e4ia

      HA HA HA HA! Lady CaCa! HA HA HA HA! Have you heard this one?… What’s black and white and red all over? A NEWSPAPER! HA HA HA HA!

      • KC

        Wow. All 4 of you have internet access in your mothers’ basement

      • Brad

        Ahh, the old standard. Because we think your jokes are lame, we MUST be in our mother’s basement. Please come up with something new.

      • Roland

        I was going to say “a nun who fell down the stairs”. Is that not correct?

    • devo

      I guess you just revealed your intelligence quotient.

  • AB

    What a pig. His standup is separate from 30 Rock, but I think if people want to make a statement to show they don’t care to support a racist pig, boycotting 30 Rock until they discipline this guy – which should include severely fines or firing – would be the way to go.
    I don’t watch the show LOL But I won’t support anything this loser does (I’ve seen him a couple of dumb comedies before).

    • KC

      Don’t worry. Nobody else really watches the show either.

    • Jen

      I’m disappointed too, but why should the 200 other people that work on 30 Rock suffer for Tracy’s issue? Boycotting the show hurts them more than it hurts Tracy.

      • Jan Olivas


      • Jared

        you’re right, they shouldn’t have to suffer for Tracy’s issue. That’s why management should just fire Tracy and avoid a boycott.

      • KEVIN

        Agree, he is the weakest link on the show. Firing him would rejuvenate it and bring it some publicity.

    • zeezee

      I watch the show and the best part is when he is NOT on it – they need to kick him and Jane Krakowski off the show…otherwise, it is hilarious!

      • atd

        No!! Not Jane!!! Eff Tracy, but Jane needs an Emmy!

      • Laura

        Seriously, Jane is a hoot. Tracy and her are good together but Jane would still be funny by herself.


      AB–you just called a black man a pig. Now the NAACP will be all over you.

      • kremzeek!

        no,tv is your god,they won’ more than if i called you garbage would your mother be all over me.

      • TV IS YOUR GOD

        My mother wants to know your address.

    • free country

      You really think Morgan should be fined. What a JOKE! This is a free country and that man is entitled to perform his act however he likes. If you don’t like it then don’t watch it. Gays think they are entitled to more rights than everyone else and the fact that they think everyone should except their way of life and go on will never happen. Regardless of how anyone one feels, gays have the right to be gay and Tracy Morgan has the right to perform his stand up act, according to the Freedom of Speech laws that everyone are entitled to.

  • SteveC

    What a meaningless apology. He apologised simply for his choice of words. Not for his bigotted message. He is a hypocrite.

  • jt

    Boy, they just never learn, do they? As a Tracy fan and 30 Rock lover I’m deeply disappointed. Hate speech has no place in society.

    • googie


    • Brad

      I’m more tired of the proliferation of ignorance, stupidity and hate.

    • Danny

      Sally, whatever, I’m not going to try and explain how wrong you are about your beliefs, but one thing: how is threatening to stab his son not hateful? Riddle me that.

    • Joe

      Sally- do you have any friends? I can give you a number for crisis counseling if you’re having dark thoughts.

    • Jan Olivas

      you need to get a bigger picture of life today….all people have the opportunity to choose a lifestyle and be happy. Obviously you don’t think so. So glad I don’t know you or have to deal with your ignorance on a regular basis.

  • Marie

    Tracy Morgan has never been funny – he’s just loud and extremely lucky to have work. And I agree with the previous comments, if you’ve seen any of his interviews – intelligence is clearly not his forte.

    • mulan

      Lmaooooooo, good one, Tracy is very dumb in his interviews

  • Kristen

    Previous to this, I’ve been a fan of Tracy. I believe most people who watch “30 Rock”, and have watched since the beginning, are most likely fans of his in some capacity.
    Regardless of his views, he should have never went on an anti-gay rant during his stand-up routine. A public apology is nice and all, but it doesn’t take back his words.

    • Juneau

      I think that those folks who are still watching 30 ROCK do so in spite of TM.

  • John

    Why so hateful, Darin? That’s not what Jesus taught.

    • Bill Shakes

      So how do you explain Jesus whipping the money changers out of the temple?…

      • j

        The bible does not say he whipped anyone. It says he drove them out of his temple.

        Think of it this way, imagine if a bunch of thieves came into your home while you were away, set up shop, brought a bunch of animals in and let them pee and crap all over your stuff. What would you do?

        Jesus fashioned a whip and DROVE THEM OUT. This can be done without hitting, sheep and cattle can be hereded without actually hitting them, the sound of a whip alone is enough to move them.

        And what did jesus do after he chased them out of his temple?

        THose people came back, and Jesus taught them that animal scarifice was not needed. He tought them god’s word.

        I ask you Bill Shakes, why would these people come back to hear Jesus speak? Especially if he actually whipped them? (which I don’t think he did)

        When he was persecuted he had planety of times to strike backa t those that injured him, tore his beard out, punched him in the face… He turned his cheek and forgave them.

        Bill, I think you should either read more of the ible before making half truth claims or at least ask someone who knows more about the bible.

        God Bless.

      • waxon

        Yes, I recall those passages where what really upset Jesus was all the pee and crap all over his stuff.

    • Rob

      I think Kirk Cameron did!

    • umish katani

      where is my reply or do you censor them

  • Dan

    I mean, out of most disgusting things come wonders; let’s just hope this means no more Tracy Jordan on ’30 Rock’!

  • mel

    Tracy Morgan is insane. What I truly don’t understand is why anyone would spend money to listen to his schizophrenic ranting. His humor only works when it’s ruthlessly restrained on 30 Rock.

  • Kelly

    I feel very sorry for you darin.

  • What?

    You sir, are an idiot.

  • Izzy

    Can someone remove Darin’s comments, please? How inappropriate.

    • ick


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