Mo’Nique and Steve Harvey go way back. The comedians who refer to each other as siblings found themselves at a crossroads when Mo’Nique visited his show and spoke about her fight to be respected in the industry.
The ‘The Parkers’ star explained to the host that she has been blackballed in Hollywood by people like Lee Daniels, Tyler Perry, and even Oprah. She went on to say that she is standing up for her own integrity and won’t be swayed by money.
Instead of supporting his sister in comedy, he told her that he can’t say the same for himself because if he crumbles, his entire family crumbles. During the conversation, he spoke over the actress multiple times and seemed to be chastising her rather than encouraging her to fight.
Social media immediately caught wind of the clip and ripped into Steve for putting down a black female comedienne who is trying to change the way the industry works for those who come after her — not to mention barely letting her get a word in.
After the backlash built, Harvey told People magazine that he misspoke.
“I’ve got to slow down when I’m talking. I can’t get into heated discussions, and I’ve got to just guard my words more carefully. But to people that really know me, I have lived my whole life as a man of integrity. So when I was referring to ‘integrity’ in that interview, I was talking about the method in which things were being done, and that is all it was.”
He went on to explain: “I never questioned anybody’s principles or anybody’s causes. I was merely questioning, for the 50-minute interview, the method that she chose going about doing it — and I regret that looking back at it now, because that was a bad choice of words.”
He also addressed critics who worried about what his message was teaching young children: “I shouted out and it happened, I regret it, but I want young people, the kids that come to my camps, the young people that I mentor, the fans that really respect me, to know to just charge that one to my head and not to my heart.”
What do you think about Steve’s clarifications? How can he make things right with Mo’Nique?