The moment everyone’s talking about:— Pop Crave (@PopCraveNet) September 1, 2018
A pastor at Aretha’s funeral got handsy with Ariana Grande as his hand can be seen wrapped tightly around her side and super close to her right breast before saying, “I thought that [Ariana Grande] was a new something at Taco Bell” pic.twitter.com/MUuyFoTBt3
The Bishop who officiated Aretha Franklin’s funeral has apologized for subjecting Ariana Grande to his “too friendly” touch which, as we now know, means groping in man-speak.
Ariana Grande was present during the legendary artist’s funeral and performed her song “A Natural Woman.” During the ceremony, Bishop Charles H. Ellis III pulled her close for a greeting. His hands wound around her back and pressed awkwardly against her chest. During the entire ordeal, Grande looked visibly uncomfortable. Like a creepy uncle most women encounter at a family dinner, the bishop did not stop there. During a ceremony that could have been solemn and could have focused on Frankiln’s legacy, Ellis joked that Grande looked like a Taco Bell item.
Grande’s presence at the funeral did end up becoming a topic of many discussions. While some were chagrined that the singer’s dress did not comply with the unofficial church policy of “below the knee,” others were more upset at what they saw as shameless groping of a young woman by an authority figure on live television.
Y’all are talking about @ArianaGrande’s dress being too short when we could be talking about this groping and how uncomfortable Ariana is? & the look on his face? Dear Jesus. pic.twitter.com/HO7i9y9WFP— Nicholas Liddle (@NLiddle16) September 1, 2018
After some well-deserved backlash from Twitter, Ellis has managed to issue a half-baked apology.
“It would never be my intention to touch any woman’s breast,” Ellis said. “I don’t know I guess I put my arm around her. Maybe I crossed the border, maybe I was too friendly or familiar but again, I apologize.”
The apology does a good job at divesting the bishop of all blame and making him aloof to the effect of his actions.
While the words may be different, the apology has a lot in common with those issued by the likes of Louis CK who, after flashing young female comics, said his victims admired him and he was only guilty of “wielding his power irresponsibly” which, again, he did without realizing it.
Banner / Thumbnail : Reuters