An outspoken cult hero known for songs like “Meat Is Murder,” “We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful,” and “The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get,” Morrissey has been crafting controversy since The Smiths formed in 1982. The Manchester native has recently been in the news as he has been doing press in support of his latest album Low in High School. While Low in High School debuted at No. 5 on the U.K. Albums chart and has subsequently charted well in the United States, Australia, and a variety of European territories, not everyone has been a fan of Morrissey’s recently-stated viewpoints.
In a recent interview with German news outlet Spiegel Online, Morrissey weighed in on the recent emergence of sexual harassment and other issues within the entertainment business. Taking an unpopular position with regards to accusations about public figures like Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Russell Simmons, and Louis C.K., Morrissey said that not all of the blame lies on these accused individuals.
“Of course, there are extreme cases, rape is disgusting, every physical attack is repulsive. But we have to see it in relative terms. Otherwise, every person on this planet is guilty. In many cases, one looks at the circumstances and thinks that the person referred to as a victim is merely disappointed.”
I don’t understand how so much of what Morrissey sings is so beautiful yet so much of what he says is so ugly.
— Chris Gethard (@ChrisGethard) November 19, 2017
Specifically with regards to Spacey, Morrissey further expanded the following.
“As far as I know, he was in a bedroom with a 14-year-old. Kevin Spacey was 26, boy 14. One wonders where the boy’s parents were. One wonders if the boy did not know what would happen. I don’t know about you, but in my youth I was never in situations like that. When you’re in somebody’s bedroom, you have to be aware of where that can lead to. That’s why it does not sound very credible to me. It seems to me that Spacey has been attacked unnecessarily.”
One person who especially took offense to this interview was Garbage vocalist Shirley Manson. Taking to the official Twitter account of Garbage, Manson directly responded.
“Morrissey has lost the f***ing plot. Weinstein + Spacey unfairly attacked? For rape, sexual abuse+coercion etc. F*** U Morrissey! F*** YOU.”
When Consequence Of Sound posted about the Garbage account’s tweet, Manson made it clear that this was her public statement as she said, “That’s right. I did.”
So far, Morrissey has not responded to Manson’s public condemnation of him. However, other entertainers have since weighed in, showing agreement with Manson. Comedian Chris Gethard has since tweeted, “I don’t understand how so much of what Morrissey sings is so beautiful yet so much of what he says is so ugly.” Judd Apatow simply weighed in with “F*** Morrissey” via his Twitter account. Meanwhile, Garbage is still touring in support of its recent studio effort, Strange Little Birds.