Paris Hilton apologises for controversial AIDS comments

'I am so sorry': Paris Hilton apologises for controversial AIDS comments and says gay people are 'the strongest people I know'

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UPDATED:

14:43 GMT, 21 September 2012

'I'm so sorry': Paris Hilton has apologised for causing offence with her comments about gay men

'I'm so sorry': Paris Hilton has apologised for causing offence with her comments about gay men

Paris Hilton has apologised after she was caught on tape seemingly slamming gay men who have sex with strangers.

The socialite insists comments she made about homosexuals were 'in no way towards the entire gay community'.

The 31-year-old had been taped saying to a friend 'most homosexual men probably have AIDS'.

Paris had been partying with an
openly gay male model friend in New York City in the early hours of
September 7 when she made the rant in a taxi they were sharing.

Her
remarks came after her pal told her about a cell phone application
called Grindr, where gay men can find other local gay, bi and curious
guys for dating with the help of GPS.

She
declared: 'Gay guys are the horniest people in the world. They're
disgusting. Dude, most of them probably have AIDS… I would be so
scared if I were a gay guy. You'll like, die of AIDS.'

Paris provoked a storm of
controversy over the comments, which was recorded by the driver of the
taxi and obtained by Radar Online – but she's now reached out to her
fans and gay following to apologise for the provocative comments.

In
a statement, she says: 'As anyone close to me knows, I always have been
and always will be a huge supporter of the gay community. I am so sorry
and so upset that I caused pain to my gay friends, fans and their
families with the comments heard this morning.

'I
was having this private conversation with a friend of mine who is gay
and our conversation was in no way towards the entire gay community.

Longtime support: Paris and her mother Kathy attended the West Hollywood Gay Pride Parade in 2005

Longtime support: Paris and her mother Kathy attended the West Hollywood Gay Pride Parade in 2005

Apology: Paris posted the statement on the GLAAD website, linking to it from her Twitter page

Apology: Paris posted the statement on the GLAAD website, linking to it from her Twitter page

'It is the last thing that I would ever want to do and I cannot put into words how much I wish I could take back every word.

'HIV/AIDS can hurt anyone, gay and
straight, men and women. It's something I take very seriously and should
not have been thrown around in conversation.

'Gay people are the strongest and
most inspiring people I know. It is so wrong when people bully or put
down others for being gay. No one should have to go through that.

'Again,
I am so sorry from the bottom of my heart and I feel absolutely
horrible. I hope that everyone can accept my apology and know that it is
not who I am or how I feel in any way. Thank you for taking a minute to
read this, I love you.'

'I'm so sorry': Paris Hilton has apologised for causing offence with her comments about gay men

'I'm so sorry': Paris Hilton has apologised for causing offence with her comments about gay men

Forget your troubles: Paris was seen arriving at Hollywood hotspot Villa Lounge with model River Viiperi, 21, this week

Forget your troubles: Paris was seen arriving at Hollywood hotspot Villa Lounge with model River Viiperi, 21, this week

Forget your troubles: Paris was seen arriving at Hollywood hotspot Villa Lounge with model River Viiperi, 21, this week

Openly gay singer Boy George took to
his Twitter page after hearing about Paris' comments and raged: 'Another
star tramples on flowers! SHAME!'

Paris' representative attempted to
clear up her remarks in the wake of the furore, claiming the star was
merely pointing about the dangers of unprotected sex.

The rep said: 'Paris Hilton’s comments
were to express that it is dangerous for anyone to have unprotected sex
that could lead to a life threatening disease.

'Paris
Hilton is a huge supporter of the gay community and would never
purposefully make any negative statements about anyone’s sexual
orientation.'

Cover girl: The socialite appeared on the front cover of top gay magazine Out in 2006

Cover girl: The socialite appeared on the front cover of top gay magazine Out in 2006