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Sir Ian McKellen tells NZ PM to ‘watch his language’

Sir Ian McKellen tells NZ PM to ‘watch his language’

Sir Ian McKellen has told off New Zealand Prime Minister John Key for his ‘gay red top’ gaffe.

McKellen, who is currently on a tour of British secondary schools educating students about how to reduce homophobia, posted a message on his blog saying:

‘New Zealand has an undeserved reputation (amongst those who have never visited) as living a little in the past, not quite up-to-date with the world elsewhere.  As a regular visitor, I’ve often pointed out how, on social issues, the Kiwis have lead the world – first country to give women the vote, a nuclear-free stronghold and in the vanguard of civil rights for gay people…

Nevertheless, Mr Key should watch his language… Even as he supports the proposal to introduce same-gender marriages in New Zealand, I do hope John Key listens to his critics and appreciates their concern. Careless talk damages lives.’

Key made the flippant comment during a radio interview last week. He later made a half-hearted apology, saying:

‘If someone was offended by it then I apologize but it’s not exactly like a term you don’t hear everywhere.’