Perez Hilton apologizes for using gay slur

GLAAD had pressured blogger to issue statement

Perez Hilton is saying he's sorry for using a gay slur.

The openly gay gossip blogger apologized Thursday for unleashing the word during a nightclub altercation Monday with Black Eyed Peas frontman that resulted in the band's tour manager being charged with assault for allegedly punching Hilton.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation had been pressing Hilton to apologize.

"I am sorry," Hilton, whose real name is Mario Lavandeira, posted Thursday. "And I mean it. No one is forcing me to write this. I am not feeling pressured to say this. I am speaking out because I realize that the last few days have been more hurtful to me -- and many others -- than the repeated blows I suffered to my head in Toronto this past weekend."

Hilton originally said he called the gay slur at a Toronto nightclub after the musician told the gossip blogger not to write about his band on his Web site. Peas' tour manager Alfred Molina was arrested after he allegedly punched Hilton following the argument. Hilton later posted about the incident on the microblogging site Twitter and in a tear-filled video on his site.

The 31-year-old blogger sued the Peas' tour manager on Wednesday in Los Angeles for battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Hilton is seeking unspecified damages of more than $25,000.
He wrote Thursday that he would donate any money won from the lawsuit to the Matthew Shepard Foundation, which seeks to support diversity programs in education.

"It is important and appropriate that Perez Hilton apologized to the LGBT community and his audience for his use of anti-gay slurs," said Rashad Robinson, GLAAD senior director of media programs. "GLAAD will continue our work to educate the public on the harms of anti-gay slurs that feed a climate of hatred and intolerance against the LGBT community."
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