Tracy Morgan Returns to Stage for First Time Since Anti-Gay Tirade
The "30 Rock" star told a New York audience of homophobic accusations: "I don't have that in me. I believe gay, straight, anybody, everybody's supposed to be happy in this world, man."
Tracy Morgan gave his first live comedy performance in New York on Saturday night since his now-infamous anti-gay rant earlier this month in Nashville.
By all accounts, the performance at Carolines Comedy Club was pretty much controversy-free, but Morgan did address the recent scandal while on stage.
"You're all sitting here waiting for me say something about the controversy, right?" he said, which the audience cheered and applauded, according to the New York Times. "I'm 42, man, and now all of a sudden I'm homophobic?"
To emphasize the point that he's not homophobic, Morgan quipped, while laughing: "My father was the lead singer in the Village People. I would sing the 'Y.M.C.A.' the loudest. I was sitting right there when he wrote the song, my daddy. The Indian was my godfather." (Morgan's relatives aren't actually members of the Village People.)
He later added of the homophobic accusations: "I don't have that in me. I believe gay, straight, anybody, everybody's supposed to be happy in this world, man."
Also later in the show, Morgan said he had something on his mind that he couldn't share with the audience, when then proceeded to encourage him to do just that.
"I can't," Morgan responded. "I just got out of controversy, man. This is diabolical."
Later, Morgan turned serious, thanking the audience for coming out despite his recent "trouble."
But it seems like Morgan couldn't resist pushing the envelope. One comment that earned groans and shouts of "uh-oh" from the audience was: "Don't ever mess with women who have retarded kids. Them young retarded males is strong. They're strong like chimps."
He also make a joke about his alleged teenage relationship with a girl he called a "cripple."
Still, there were reportedly no audience walkouts as there had been at the June 3 show in Nashville, where Morgan said he would "pull out a knife and stab" his own son if he were gay.
The comments gained attention after audience member Kevin Rogers posted them on his Facebook page.
According to Rogers, Morgan, "said if his son that was gay he better come home and talk to him like a man and not [he mimicked a gay, high pitched voice] or he would pull out a knife and stab that little N (one word I refuse to use) to death. ... Tracy then said he didn't [expletive] care if he [angered] some gays."
Morgan's tirade was full of homophobic references and expletives, according to Rogers' Facebook account.
Afterward, several in Hollywood spoke out against the actor-comedian, including Wanda Sykes, Chris Rock, NBC entertainment chief Robert Greenblatt and Morgan's 30 Rock co-stars Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin and Cheyenne Jackson.
He also committed to working with GLAAD on an anti-bullying PSA and meet with LGBT youth in New York and returned to Nashville last week to apologize to "my friends and my family and my fans and everyone in every community who were offended with this."