The singer won the coveted prize of Song of the Year for his summer anthem Can’t Stop The Feeling, and he used the moment to voice his support for LGBT+ youth.
He explained to the audience that he wrote the song because he “wanted it to be about inclusion [and] about being together” before getting explicit about intolerance.
“If you are black or you are brown or you are gay or you are lesbian or you are trans, anyone that is treating you unkindly is because they are afraid or they have been taught to be afraid of how important you are. Because being different means you make the difference, so fuck ‘em.”
The 36-year-old referred to himself as “a sissy singing boy from Tennessee” in the speech, hinting that he’s experienced some intolerance himself during his career.
— TBS Network (@TBSNetwork) March 6, 2017
Viewers were concerned that the TV network Turner Networks had muted the mention of his gay, lesbian and trans fans but iHeartRadio tweeted an unedited video of the speech.
You can hear JT drop the F-bomb below.
— iHeartRadio (@iHeartRadio) March 6, 2017