Almost a decade after Kelly Osbourne’s offensive comment about Latinos during a segment on The View sparked instant backlash, the former reality star and TV host is addressing what happened.
“It’s the most cringe moment of my entire life,” Osbourne told Rolling Stone in an interview published Jan. 18.
Osbourne made the comment in an Aug. 2015 episode of The View while attempting to defend Latinos during a conversation about former president Donald Trump’s views on immigrants. As presidential candidate Trump had said things like, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best.”
Osbourne gave a rebuttal that she thought hit the nail on the head but completely missed the mark.“If you kick every Latino out of this country, then who is going to be cleaning your toilets, Donald Trump?” she said.
Osbourne was immediately met with pushback from her fellow panelists, who all gasped. Rosie Perez attempted to correct her by saying, “Oh, that’s not—” and got cut off by Osbourne, who tried to defend herself. She later responded on Facebook, writing, “In this particular case I will take responsibility for my poor choice of words but I will not apologize for being a racist as I am NOT.”
About 10 years later, Osbourne’s clumsy comment has resurfaced in the most 2024 way: becoming a TikTok meme. Her serious and confident tone while saying something problematic has inspired countless users to take on the same cadence as they make jokes about specific communities.
“If you kick out every they/them out of this country, who is going to make your drinks, Starbucks?” TikTok user @eli_orwhatever said in a video that has since garnered over 12 million views.
Another person joked, “If you get rid of every guarded, hopeless romantic that’s never been in a serious relationship, then who is going to be listening to your Reputation album, Taylor Swift?”
Even Amanda Schultz, known on TikTok as DJ Mandy—a purposefully bad DJ who mixes disparate songs—got in on it, combining the Osbourne sound, combines it with “Mr. Brightside” by the Killers and a Sea Shanty.
The chronically online will know, however, that this isn’t the first time Osbourne’s The View moment has been used as a punchline. For at least a couple years, people have referenced the awkward exchange between Osbourne and the other hosts in response to others who think they are making a smart point but don’t quite stick the landing.
Osbourne told Rolling Stone she wanted to talk about the controversy after never publicly discussing it, saying it was a painful experience that was “life-changing, chaotic, and crazy in every way.” Now, Osbourne says, she’s “learned when to shut up and to stop talking” and that she’s “definitely not the person” she was before the moment.
While some of the jokes online using her comment have made her laugh, “I’d be lying if I said I didn’t hate myself a little bit more each time I see it,” she said. “But to see people be creative with it does put a smile on my face. It turns something so ugly into something funny.”Leave a comment