Matt Damon Says He's 'Never' Called Anyone A Homophobic Slur

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Matt Damon claims he doesn’t “use slurs of any kind,” even though he literally just admitted that he did

In the immediate aftermath of Matt Damon inexplicably admitting that his daughter wrote a “very long, beautiful treatise” about why using the f-slur to describe LGBTQ+ community is so dangerous, he’s now claiming he does not “use slurs of any kind.” Because… of course.

ICYMI, the Sunday Times published an interview with Damon over the weekend in which the actor shared how one of his daughters had to explain to him — in the year of our lord 2021 — why it’s unacceptable to use the f-slur in any context. Though Damon didn’t specify which of his children is more intelligent and evolved than he is (he has three daughters and a stepdaughter with his wife, Luciana Barroso), the internet was quick to point out how much it sucks that he would not only choose to use such a demeaning, harmful, and homophobic word, but to openly admit that he only recently learned not to use it, as if it was some kind of badge of honor.

Damon is now attempting to clarify things, walking back what he said in a statement in which he explains that he really meant to highlight how awesome his kid is — not to potentially hurt a group of marginalized individuals who face daily threats, violence, and discrimination all over the world.

“During a recent interview, I recalled a discussion I had with my daughter where I attempted to contextualize for her the progress that has been made – though by no means completed – since I was growing up in Boston and, as a child, heard the word used on the street before I knew what it even referred to,” Damon said in a statement, per Variety. “I explained that that word was used constantly and casually and was even a line of dialogue in a movie of mine as recently as 2003; she in turn expressed incredulity that there could ever have been a time where that word was used unthinkingly. To my admiration and pride, she was extremely articulate about the extent to which that word would have been painful to someone in the LGBTQ+ community regardless of how culturally normalized it was. I not only agreed with her but thrilled at her passion, values, and desire for social justice.”

“I have never called anyone [the f-slur] in my personal life and this conversation with my daughter was not a personal awakening. I do not use slurs of any kind,” he continued. “I have learned that eradicating prejudice requires active movement toward justice rather than finding passive comfort in imagining myself ‘one of the good guys.’ And given that open hostility against the LGBTQ+ community is still not uncommon, I understand why my statement led many to assume the worst. To be as clear as I can be, I stand with the LGBTQ+ community.”

Deadline reports that GLAAD’s Head of Talent Anthony Allen Ramos issued a statement on the organization’s behalf asking for “accountability” for anyone who chooses to use the word. “The conversations that have arisen after Matt Damon’s original interview and subsequent remarks today are an important reminder that this word, or any word that aims to disparage and disrespect LGBTQ+ people, has no place in mainstream media, social media, classrooms, workplaces, and beyond. There needs to be accountability at a time when anti-LGBTQ+ slurs remain rampant today and can fuel discrimination and stereotypes, especially when used by those outside of the community to defame or describe LGBTQ+ people.”

Here’s hoping Damon will heed it as a lesson learned and acknowledge that his words have power, no matter his intentions.