After days of silence on the matter of the drunken, anti-Semitic comments that ended his career at Dior, designer John Galliano has released a statement apologizing for “any offence” and pledging to seek help.
Galliano’s lawyers Harbottle and Lewis emailed the following statement to a variety of news sources this morning. In it, Galliano denies that he made any anti-Semitic statements during the widely reported incident last Thursday at La Perle in Paris. While he acknowledges that he has done something to make people see him in “the worst possible light,” he does not acknowledge the video in which he drunkenly proclaims “I love Hitler.” The full statement is below:
“Since the events of last Thursday evening I have not been able to make any public comment on what took place based upon advice from my French lawyer. However, given the continuing delays at the French Prosecutor’s Office I should make my position clear.
“I completely deny the claims made against me and have fully co-operated with the police investigation.
“A number of independent witnesses have given evidence and have told the police that I was subjected to verbal harassment and an unprovoked assault when an individual tried to hit me with a chair having taken violent exception to my look and my clothing. For these reasons I have commenced proceedings for defamation and the threats made against me.
“However, I fully accept that the accusations made against me have greatly shocked and upset people.
“I must take responsibility for the circumstances in which I found myself and for allowing myself to be seen to be behaving in the worst possible light.
“I only have myself to blame and I know that I must face up to my own failures and that I must work hard to gain people’s understanding and compassion. To start this process I am seeking help and all I can hope for in time is to address the personal failure which led to these circumstances and try and earn people’s forgiveness.
“I have fought my entire life against prejudice, intolerance and discrimination, having been subjected to it myself. In all my work my inspiration has been to unite people of every race, creed, religion and sexuality by celebrating their cultural and ethnic diversity through fashion. That remains my guiding light.
“Anti-semitism and racism have no part in our society. I unreservedly apologise for my behaviour in causing any offence.”
Part of Galliano’s quest for forgiveness includes a stint at a rehabilitiation clinic. Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell were among of a coterie of Galliano’s friends who convinced him to seek help. Galliano’s clinic of choice has not been revealed, but The New York Times reports it is likely he will check into The Meadows, “a facility in Wickenberg, Arizona, where Elton John and Donatella Versace were treated in recent years.”
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