More than a week ago, a profanity-laced video showed Country singer Morgan Wallen spewing the N-word.
He was almost immediately suspended from his record label, his songs removed from all major radio channels.
Wallen has clearly been taking his time and listening.
This week, he issued a very thorough and well-conceived apology.
On Wednesday, February 10, Morgan Wallen took to Instagram to issue a 5-minute apology video.
“I’m long overdue to make a statement regarding my last incident,” his statement began.
“I wanted to collect my thoughts, seek some real guidance, and come to you with a complete thought before I did,” Wallen explained.
Wallen characterized the video as one taken during “a bender,” which he emphasized was “not something I’m proud of either.”
“I let so many people down,” he lamented. “I let my parents down and they’re the furthest thing from … the person in that video.”
Wallen continued: “I let my son down, and I’m not okay with that.”
“So this week, I’ve been waiting to say anything further until I got the chance to apologize to those closest to me,” Wallen explained, “that I knew I personally hurt.”
He added that he has “accepted some invitations from some amazing Black organizations, some executives, and leaders to engage in some very real and honest conversations.”
One of those organizations was the NAACP.
“I’ll admit to you I was pretty nervous to accept those invitations,” Wallen confessed.
“They had every right to step on my neck while I was down,” he acknowledged, “to not show me any grace.”
“But they did the exact opposite,” Wallen noted. “They offered me grace, and they also paired that with an offer to learn and to grow.”
Wallen said that their “kindness really inspired me to dig deeper on how to do something about this.”
“And one thing I’ve learned already [and] is specifically sorry for is that it matters my words matter,” he noted.
“A word can truly hurt a person,” Wallen now recognizes, “and in my core, it’s not what I’m okay with.”
Wallen shared that he has already heard “firsthand some personal stories from Black people that honestly shook me.”
He affirmed: “I know what I’m going through this week doesn’t even compare to some of the trials I heard about from them.”
Wallen expressed: “I came away from those discussions with a deep appreciation for them and a clear understanding of the weight of my words.”
“I wish the circumstances were different for me to learn these things,” Wallen acknowledged, “but I’m also glad it started the process for me to do so.”
“I’ve got many more things to learn,” he recognized, “but I already know that I don’t want to add to any division.”
“Our words matter and I just want to encourage anyone watching to please learn from my mistake,” Wallen pleaded. “There’s no reason to downplay what I did, it matters.”
Wallen shared that he has “been sober for nine days” following the video’s surfacing, emphasized that he does not want his fans trying to defend him from the indefensible.
“I appreciate those who still see something in me and have defended me,” he began. “But for today, please don’t. I was wrong.”
“I fully accept any penalties I’m facing,” Wallen shared. “This entire situation is ugly right now, but I’ll keep searching for ways to become the example instead of being made one.”
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