Brian May is defending himself after comments he reportedly made about the Brit Awards raised questions from the trans community.
The Queen co-founder and guitarist was speaking to the press at ITV's Palooza event in London when he addressed the "cancel culture" phenomenon and appeared to criticize the Brit Awards for removing separate "male" and "female" performer categories in favor of non-gendered ones.
But May says his quote was not what it was made out to be by the "predatory Press hacks" that reported on it to paint him as disapproving of the trans community.
"Yes — I was ambushed and completely stitched up by a journalist at the recent ITV event. And it's led to a whole mess of press stories making it look like I'm unfriendly to trans people," May said via Instagram in his clarifying statement. "Nothing could be further from the truth. My words were subtly twisted. I should have known better than to talk to those predatory Press hacks.
He continued: "Sincere apologies to anyone who has been hurt by the stories. My heart is open as always to humans of all colors, all creeds, all sexes and sexualities, all shapes and sizes — and all creations. We all deserve respect and an equal place in this world. And my grateful thanks to all of you who stepped up to defend me in the last couple of days. It means so much that you have faith in me."
Though he is widely beloved, May is not immune to dust-ups with the press. In early-2020, the guitarist lost his cool with a cameraman who was filming him signing autographs for fans at Brisbane Airport.