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Kevin Hart Credits Wanda Sykes With Helping Him Understand The Harm Of His Anti-Gay Comments

Hart told Anderson Cooper on '60 Minutes' how Sykes helped him realize just how harmful his past anti-gay comments were after he refused to apologize.

Screenshot of Kevin Hart; Wanda Sykes
60 Minutes/YouTube; Robin L. Marshall/Getty Images

Actor and comedian Kevin Hart credited fellow comedian Wanda Sykes with helping him understand the harm of his anti-gay comments, telling CNN's Anderson Cooper on 60 MInutes that the out Sykes gave him a wake-up call after he refused to apologize.

Hart faced backlash in 2018 after his old anti-gay tweets resurfaced online. When the comedian was announced as the host of the Oscars, internet users found several since-deleted posts that contained anti-gay slurs and mocked LGBTQ+ people.

One tweet from 2011 read:

“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.’”

Further examination revealed Hart's history of anti-gay sentiment, including a 2010 stand-up bit in which he said:

“One of my biggest fears is my son growing up and being gay.”

Hart initially refused to apologize for his past anti-gay tweets when they resurfaced, telling people to “stop searching for reasons to be angry” in a lengthy Instagram caption. He later stepped down from hosting the Oscars, apologizing to the LGBTQ+ community and saying that he did not "want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists."

Now he's crediting Sykes with helping him understand why his past remarks were so problematic.

You can hear what he said in the video below.

Kevin Hart: The 60 Minutes

Hart said:

"My understanding came from the best lightbulb ever."
“Wanda Sykes said, ‘There’s people that are being hurt today because of comments like the ones that you made then. And there’s people that were saying it’s okay to make those comments today based off of what you did then.’”
“It was presented to me in a way where I couldn’t ignore that. So, in those moments of despair, great understanding and education can come out of it if you’re given the opportunity.”

But Hart's remarks received a mixed response, with some praising him while others were less impressed.

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Hart also addressed his previous controversies, last month telling the Wall Street Journal about his "come-to-Jesus moment."

Hart said that "it’s okay to take a step back and to be educated" and that he received a "crash course" that was "necessary and needed."

The outlet reported that Hart "says he’s not concerned about doing too much or wearing out his fan base," noting that he dismisses remarks from critics who've said he's been "overexposed for the last 15 years."