Is it ‘second time’s a charm?’ Guido Barilla hopes so. First the Italian pasta czar, co-owner of the family-run Barilla pasta company, one of the largest and richest food manufacturers in the world, issued a sorta-kinda-maybe apology for his comments earlier on national radio, in which he denigrated LGBT families, vowed “never” to represent them in his advertising, and said anyone who didn’t like it could “eat another brand.”
Video link below.
A day later Barilla said: “I’m sorry if my comments offended anyone. I only wanted to underline the central role of the woman in the family.” Few seemed impressed. In fact, some critics alleged that Barilla was just piling sexism on top of homophobia. Today, a shamefaced Barilla released a 43 second Internet video making a more comprehensive apology:
Throughout my life I’ve respected every person I’ve met, including gays and their families, without any distinction. I’ve never discriminated against anyone. I’ve heard the countless reactions around the world to my words, which have depressed and saddened me. It is clear that I have a lot to learn about the lively debate concerning the evolution of the family.
He then vowed to meet with representatives from LGBT groups.
Does he really mean it? And will the apology quell calls for a boycott as well as the mockery that company and owner have been subjected to in LGBT-friendly media? We’ll watch the pot and tell you whether it boils.