Russell Tovey Apologizes After Saying He’s Thankful He’s Tough And Not “Effeminate”

HBO ‘Looking’ star Russell Tovey has waved the white flag of surrender in the face of mounting criticism for comments he made thanking his dad for toughening him up and not letting him go to theater school where men “prance around” and become effeminate.

Via the Guardian:

Tovey thinks carefully about what he’s going to say next. If I had to guess, watching him fidget, I’d say he’s weighing up whether to be honest at the risk of causing offence, or whether to divert and say something bland. He chooses to risk offence. “I feel like I could have been really effeminate, if I hadn’t gone to the school I went to. Where I felt like I had to toughen up. If I’d have been able to relax, prance around, sing in the street, I might be a different person now. I thank my dad for that, for not allowing me to go down that path. Because it’s probably given me the unique quality that people think I have.”

Tovey issued the following ‘apology’ on Twitter:

Yesterday, actor Alec Mapa issued this strongly worded reply to Tovey’s initial comments:

He’s glad he’s not effeminate? Well the feeling is mutual lady, I’m glad I’m not you.

Being an effeminate gay man still remains an unforgivable sin in our masculinity obsessed culture. I think about all the young sissy boys who return from school after being bullied and shamed day after day, perhaps returning home to the same treatment.

I know because I was one of those kids. Was? I still am! I still get it in the neck for being who I am.

All they need to hear is that they’re fine exactly the way they are. That there’s nothing wrong. That they haven’t killed anyone. That they’re worthy of love and acceptance, AS IS.

I’m in no way outraged by this. I’ve been hearing this since day I could mince. It’s just disappointing. We experience so much discrimination from the outside world, wouldn’t it be great if we were kinder to each other in our own community?

There are a billion reasons to feel actual shame and remorse. Being your authentic, fabulous, faggy self shouldn’t be one of them.