The actor Michael Imperioli has clarified his take on a series of recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings that narrow protections for minorities in the U.S.
The Sopranos and White Lotus actor took to Instagram on the Fourth of July to discuss his now-deleted post criticizing recent rulings around artists’ ability to decline service to LGBTQ customers and the end of affirmation action policies in higher education, which declared that colleges’ use of race as a factor in student admissions.
At the time, wrote that “hate and ignorance is not a legitimate point of view” and “America is becoming dumber by the minute.”
“I’ve decided to forbid bigots and homophobes from watching The Sopranos, The White Lotus, Goodfellas or any movie or tv show I’ve been in,” the actor wrote in the caption of a news article.
“Thank you Supreme Court for allowing me to discriminate and exclude those who I don’t agree with and am opposed to. USA ! USA!”
Now, Imperioli says that while “the post certainly got the message across to most and did it’s job,” he wants to clarify that his message was a “satirical and symbolic take on where blatantly discriminatory Supreme Court decisions are taking us as a nation: into utter division and possibly far worse.”
“I believe in religious freedom, freedom of speech and the right for individuals to pursue happiness. I also believe in the separation of church and state as stated in the First Amendment. I believe that all people regardless of race, religion, color, creed, gender or sexuality are entitled to freedom, equality, rights and protection under the laws of our nation,” he said.
In his effort to be more direct, literal and explicit in the face of some not understanding the “irony” he was expressing, he added that, “I vehemently oppose hate, prejudice and bigotry and always have.”