Perez’s Bad Week Ends in a Jackson Twitter Storm
It’s been a bad week for gossip maven Perez Hilton. First, he gets a black eye in an altercation with the Black Eyed Peas’ manager, in which Perez admittedly hurled antigay slurs, and after which he was forced to apologize to anyone whom he may have offended. He may have to do that apology thing all over again, because now he seems to have offended all the Michael Jackson fans in the Twitterverse.
But first, let us backtrack a bit. Perez’s weepy apology video about hurling slurs and getting punched and whatnot was subsequently mocked in a video by Breckin Meyer. And somewhere in there, Perez decided to sue the Black Eyed Peas’ manager and donate $25,000 of his projected “winnings” to the Matthew Shepard Foundation. The foundation, however, declined the offer in no uncertain terms, because “so much of our work involves education to reduce the use of hateful language against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered persons, or those so perceived, it would be inappropriate for us to benefit financially from circumstances in which such a verbal attack was involved.”
And that was all just the prelude to another anti-Perez wave crashing on Twitter after the gossip columnist initially suggested that Michael Jackson’s heart attack was exaggerated, possibly as a way to wriggle out of his upcoming concert tour. Perez’s post was removed after Jackson died, but the New York Post captured some of it: “Heart attack or cold feet? We knew something like this would happen! . . . We are dubious. ***** pulled a similar stunt when he was getting ready for his big HBO special in ’95 when he ‘collapsed’ at rehearsal.”
Needless to say, folks on Twitter were outraged, including Pete Wentz, who engaged in a lengthy back-and-forth with Perez.
Wentz was incredulous about Hilton’s generalizations about Jackson, writing on the microblogging site:
“So ur saying u don’t know him as a person but say he was far from a perfect person. That’s the disconnect I’m talking about,” and… “Just own up to tearing ppl like mj down- and let him rest in peace.” And about 15 other things.
Hilton countered that, “I didn’t know you had the magical powers to look inside my heart and soul and see how I’m truly feeling and what I’m thinking.” Passions ran high on both sides, as well as out in the nonfamous zones of Twitter, where enraged Jackson fans started a campaign to “unfollow Perez.“