ENTERTAINMENT

Justin Bieber Apologises For Racist Joke Video: ‘I Made A Reckless And Immature Mistake'

02/06/2014 08:03 BST | Updated 02/06/2014 12:59 BST

Justin Bieber has issued a public apology after a video of him telling a racist joke emerged online.

The ‘Baby’ singer has stated that he knows now that his joke was “hurtful”, explaining that he was young and unaware of the “power of certain words” when the clip was filmed.

justin bieber

Justin Bieber

“As a young man, I didn’t understand the power of certain words and how they can hurt,” his statement reads.

“I thought it was ok to repeat hurtful words and jokes, but didn’t realise at the time that it wasn’t funny and that in fact my actions were continuing the ignorance.

“Thanks to friends and family I learned from my mistakes and grew up and apologised for those wrongs.”

Justin added that he knows he should say sorry once again now the video has been made public, stating: “Now that these mistakes from the past have become public I need to apologize again to all those I have offended.

“I’m very sorry. I take my friendships with people of all cultures very seriously and I apologise for offending or hurting anyone with my childish and inexcusable mistake.

“I was a kid then and I am a man now who knows my responsibility to the world and to not make that mistake again.”

“Ignorance has no place in our society and I hope the sharing of my faults can prevent others from making the same mistake in the future,” he continued. “I thought long and hard about what I wanted to say but telling the truth is always what’s right.

"I made a reckless and immature mistake and I’m grateful to those close to me who helped me learn those lessons as a young man. Once again, I’m sorry.”

justin bieber 2011

Justin in 2011

The video was filmed during the creation of the singer’s 2011 documentary ‘Never Say Never’.

In the footage, Justin shares a joke with a female friend, asking: “Why are black people afraid of chainsaws?”

He then grins and makes a whirring noise as he says the punchline: “Run n*****, n*****, n*****, n*****, n*****.”

Justin is the second popstar to face a backlash after seemingly racist comments in recent weeks.

A video of One Direction’s Zayn Malik appearing to smoke a joint caused further uproar when fans realised Louis Tomlinson appears to use a shortened version of the n-word while narrating the clip.

This isn’t Justin’s first controversial moment this year either. So far in 2014, he’s been investigated over a robbery claim, slammed by Banksy after getting one of the artist’s designs tattooed on his arm and arrested for driving under the influence.

Justin Bieber: Child Star To Bad Boy

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