Formula One champion driver Lewis Hamilton apologized Tuesday evening for posting a video to social media of him celebrating Christmas with his family, in which he tells his young nephew that “Boys don’t wear princess dresses!”.
Referring to the Christmas day post which he has since deleted, Hamilton wrote on micro-blogging platform Twitter Wednesday that ” I was playing around with my nephew and realized that my words were inappropriate so I removed the post. I meant no harm and did not mean to offend anyone at all. I love that my nephew feels free to express himself as we all should.”
Continuing to disavow his instinctive reaction upon seeing his nephew wearing girls clothes, Hamilton wrote: “My deepest apologies for my behaviour as I realise it is really not acceptable for anyone, no matter where you are from, to marginalise or stereotype anyone.
“I have always been in support of anyone living their life exactly how they wish and I hope I can be forgiven for this lapse in judgement.”
In the original video, which has now been removed from social media, the celebrity racing driver told fans as he pointed the camera towards a young boy wearing a princess dress and holding a wand: “I’m so sad right now. Look at my nephew.
“Why are you wearing a princess dress? Is this what you got for Christmas… Boys don’t wear princess dresses!”
Hamilton was attacked on social media and in print by transgender activists and there have been calls for the driver to be stripped of his MBE, an award from the British crown for services to sports, for his use of social media.
The Metro free newspaper reports some were concerned about the sincerity of Hamilton’s apology after he ‘liked’ a number of tweets defending him, including one that criticised the “PC brigade”, which said: “You’ve done absolutely nothing wrong Lewis. You should never have to apologize to the PC brigade who are getting worse every year. Have fun with your family and don’t worry what others think.”
The princess dress episode is not the first social media incident for the driver. Breitbart reported in 2015 after Hamilton was ordered by his race boss to take down a video and photographs of himself enjoying time on a rifle range hitting targets with an AR-15 rifle.
Hamilton removed the posts at the instructions of his employer but was otherwise unapologetic, remarking: “I went to the shooting range, shot some fun targets. It was a lot of fun.”