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Gospel Music Association apologizes to Kirk Franklin for censoring his acceptance speech


Courtesy of GMA Dove AwardsThe Gospel Music Association is apologizing to Kirk Franklin for censoring his speech during the broadcast of the 50th Annual Dove Awards earlier this month.

Franklin, who was named Gospel Artist of the Year, first addressed the censorship on Monday in a lengthy Instagram video, pointing out that back in 2016, TBN, which airs the show, edited out a portion of his acceptance speech in which he voiced his concern for police brutality against the black community. 

Franklin then says he was told it wouldn’t happen again, but at this year’s ceremony, it did. 

“During my speech, I brought attention the murder of Atatiana Jefferson in her home by a white police officer,” Franklin in the video.

“I asked everyone in the audience and those viewing to join me in prayer for not only Atatiana’s family…but also for the family of the police officer,” he explained. “During the airing of the awards on the same network, again, that part of my speech was edited out.”

Franklin said he planned to boycott TBN and the Dove Awards until “tangible plans are put in place to protect and champion diversity.”

After the video went viral, the Gospel Music Association, which hosts the Dove Awards, apologized to Franklin.

“We are deeply apologetic for the missteps that happened relating to the editing of Kirk Franklin’s Dove Awards acceptance speech,” association president Jackie Patillo said in an official statement.

“It left a general perception that we are not concerned with key social issues that affect people of color,” the statement continued. “It is not our intent to disregard or silence any of our artists, and we are deeply saddened by this perception and are committed to change this.”

An unedited version of Franklin’s speech was later released online by the Gospel Music Association.

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