Don’t expect Perez Hilton to be signing up his 5-year-old son for dance classes anytime soon.
The celebrity blogger and multimedia entrepreneur sparked criticism by saying he wants his son, Mario Armando Lavandeira III, to grow up to be straight because it’s “easier.” As a result, Hilton said he was reluctant to enroll Mario in a dance class, because “like 50 percent or more of little boys who take dance class end up being gay.”
“If I had my preference, I would prefer my son to be heterosexual because that’s easier,” Hilton said in an April 1 YouTube clip posted to his website, which can be viewed above. “As a gay man, I’m not ashamed of being gay, but if I could go back in time and when I was 18, be given a choice ... I would’ve chosen, then, to be heterosexual.”
He continued: “Being a gay man, or even a gay woman or a transgender man or a transgender woman in America and around the world is still a harder road to travel on. We are still discriminated against, and I don’t want my son [or daughters Mia, 2, and Mayte, 5 months] to have a harder path in life.”
Sunday’s video statement clarified similar comments Hilton made in an episode of “The Perez Hilton Podcast” last week.
“This might get me in trouble, [but] I purposefully would not put my son in dance class, because dance class might make your kid gay,” he told co-host Chris Booker. “I would prefer if my son was heterosexual. If I had to choose, I would be heterosexual, too. It would be easier. I’ve said that before.” (Hilton’s comments come at about 26:51 in the “Chippendales” episode of the podcast.)
Both the podcast and the subsequent video drew scathing responses from many on social media. They also prompted a lengthy rebuttal from Dance Magazine’s Courtney Escoyne, who wrote Tuesday, “Are there gay men in dance? Yes. Did dancing make them that way? No.”
Hilton didn’t back down on his original remarks in the video Sunday, noting, “I don’t think it’s a homophobic thing to say that a disproportionate amount of male singers, actors [and] dancers on Broadway are gay. There are more gay men drawn to that profession. That’s not homophobic ― that’s just a fact.”
“If he really wanted to take dance class ― which he hasn’t expressed that ― if he begged and pleaded and I saw that would him truly happy, I would do that,” he said of his son. “But I’m not just going to sign him up for one.”
“I said what I said because I think I’m a good dad,” he added.