Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton has said he is sorry for publicly making fun of his young nephew for wearing a princess dress. He said it was "not acceptable" to "marginalize or stereotype anyone."
British driving ace Lewis Hamilton has apologized for a video in which he mocked his nephew who was wearing a princess dress he had received for Christmas.
The video, which Hamilton shared with his 5.7 million Instagram followers on Monday, opens with the four-time Formula One world champion saying, "I'm so sad right now, look at my nephew,” and then turns to the young boy who is donned in a pink and purple princess dress and a love heart fairy wand.
The nephew happily nods when Hamilton asks, "Why are you wearing a princess dress? Is this what you got for Christmas?" before covering his ears and turning away from the camera when Hamilton tells him that, "boys don't wear princess dresses.”
Hamilton apologized for the video, which he has since deleted, via a series of tweets on Twitter, saying he realized his words were inappropriate and that he "meant no harm and did not mean to offend anyone at all.”
"I love that my nephew feels free to express himself as we all should,” Hamilton wrote. "My deepest apologies for my behavior as I realize it is really not acceptable for anyone, no matter where you are from, to marginalize or stereotype anyone.”
He continued: "I have always been in support of anyone living their life exactly how they wish and I hope I can be forgiven for this lapse in judgment.”
Liam Hacket, founder and CEO of anti-bullying NGO Ditch the Label, which has run campaigns on the pressures and limits of traditional masculinity, took to Twitter to express his concerns.
"Disappointing to see somebody with such a huge platform use it to publicly shame and attempt to undermine a small child,” Hacket said.
law/tj (AFP, AP)