Sharon Osbourne is speaking out following her departure from The Talk admitting, "I'm angry, I'm hurt" by the scandal that sparked a CBS investigation and allegations of racism.
"I've been called so many things in my life — I am so used to being called names — but a racist is one I will not take," Osbourne, 68, said Friday during an appearance on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher.
Osbourne, who co-hosted the daytime series for more than a decade, was discussing the March 10 incident during which she defended Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan, 55, against racism claims after he slammed Meghan Markle for her and Prince Harry's March interview with Oprah Winfrey. During the special, Markle revealed that she fell into a depression and experienced suicidal thoughts while serving as a royal and that members of Harry's family made racist comments about their unborn son Archie, 1. Morgan shed doubt on Markle's account, prompting viewer outcry — including from Markle — and his on-air resignation.
However, Osbourne defended Morgan tweeting, "I am with you. I stand by you. People forget that you're paid for your opinion and that you're just speaking your truth." She also affirmed her stance on-air, in the name of free speech, an argument that co-host Sheryl Underwood challenged in a heated back-and-forth.
"To not want to address that because she is a Black woman, and to try to dismiss it or to make it seem less than what it is that's what makes it racist," Underwood told Osbourne. "But right now, I'm talking to a woman I believe is my friend and I don't want anybody here to watch this and think we are attacking you for being racist."
Osbourne subsequently apologized for her remarks tweeting, "I have always been embraced with so much love & support from the Black community & I have deep respect & love for the Black community. To anyone of color that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry." As CBS launched an internal review of the March 10 incident, reports surfaced that Osbourne made discriminatory comments toward former Talk co-hosts Holly Robinson Peete, Julie Chen, Sara Gilbert and Leah Remini, and the show went on hiatus.
On March 26, Osbourne left her job at The Talk. “The events of the March 10 broadcast were upsetting to everyone involved, including the audience watching at home,” CBS said in a statement. “As part of our review, we concluded that Sharon’s behavior toward her co-hosts during the March 10 episode did not align with our values for a respectful workplace. We also did not find any evidence that CBS executives orchestrated the discussion or blindsided any of the hosts.”
"Disagreeing with someone does not make you racist in my book," Osbourne told Maher adding that her former co-hosts are "disgruntled ladies." The two also slammed the concept of "cancel culture" with Osbourne declaring, "I'm going to be fine … I'm a fighter."
The interview ran one day before the funeral of Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth who died on April 9.
If you or someone you know are experiencing suicidal thoughts, call 911, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text HOME to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.
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