Kevin Hart is in hot water for some homophobic tweets coming back to haunt him. Earlier this week, it was announced that Hart will host the 2019 Oscars. Shortly after the announcement, Twitter started shining a light on tweets, mostly from 2009-2011, where the Night School star made homophobic comments and used anti-gay slurs.
Aside from comedian’s habitual use of the word fag, Hart also talks about his son and how gender roles must be maintained at all times in his household. [Ed. note: This tweet appears to have been deleted early this morning.]
Yo if my son comes home & try’s 2 play with my daughters doll house I’m going 2 break it over his head & say n my voice “stop that’s gay”
— Kevin Hart (@KevinHart4real) January 11, 2011
The ‘joke’ about not wanting his son to be gay appears word-for-word in his 2010 special Seriously Funny. The only thing that seems to have changed is public sentiment towards anti-gay slurs.
In a 2015 interview with Rolling Stone, Hart said of the joke about his son, “I wouldn’t tell that joke today, because when I said it, the times weren’t as sensitive as they are now. I think we love to make big deals out of things that aren’t necessarily big deals, because we can. These things become public spectacles. So why set yourself up for failure?”
In the same year, Hart gave an interview to the Breakfast Club in which he revealed he would not consider playing a gay character because “people are going to think.”
In 2014, Hart had said during an AMA on Reddit that he was done doing jokes about gay people. “It’s just a sensitive topic and I respect people of all orientations,” Hart wrote. “So, it’s just best left alone.” But he didn’t. In 2016, GLAAD—one of the largest LGBTQ advocacy groups in the nation—noted in its yearly report about positive and negative portrayals of queer people in Hollywood that Get Hard and The Wedding Ringer contained “more blatant and incessant gay panic humor than we have seen in a Hollywood film in years.” Both movies starred Hart.
I wonder when Kevin Hart is gonna start deleting all his old tweets 🤔🤔🤔 pic.twitter.com/ZbYG6SI3Xm
— Benjamin Lee (@benfraserlee) December 5, 2018
A quick google search of “Kevin Hart controversy” would have yielded all of this along with a potential history of domestic violence. But his tweets using fag or crude AIDS humor have never caused any backlash, and his jokes at the expense of his son have never been enough of a detractor from his career to mean anything.
In 1988, Bob Hope used fag on The Tonight Show to insult a man for wearing a colorful tie. In 2008, Jerry Lewis called cricket a fag game. In 2011, Tracy Morgan joked that he would stab his son if he ever came out as gay. And in 2019, Kevin Hart will still host the Oscars.
Editor’s Note: A previous version of this article misrepresented a quote as being told plainly in the Rolling Stone interview, but was rather a quote from his 2010 special used in the interview. The quote has since been removed to not confuse the context in which it was said. We regret the error.