AceShowbiz - George Clooney has returned to the Internet to clarify comments he made last week (March 28) urging people to boycott the Sultan of Brunei's luxury hotels as a protest against his country's harsh new anti-gay laws.
Reacting to the introduction on legislation that will make it potentially legal to stone gay men and women to death in Brunei, the movie star wrote a column for Deadline, listing the nine hotels around the world the public should stay away from.
Some people applauded George for making a stand, while others attacked him for using his platform as an international icon to call for a hotel chain boycott.
Returning to the outlet on Monday, Clooney explains he turned down "dozens of interviews" over the weekend, because he felt he had made himself clear, but explains, "Since there have been people who have legitimate questions about the effect of pointing out these hotels owned by the Sultan of Brunei, I do believe a couple of clarifications are in order."
"The first question everyone asks is if a boycott has any effect on the intended target or does it just hurt the people who work at the hotels?" he writes. "I share those concerns, but to equate their situation with the fact that this week the 5th richest country in the world would take a young woman who is found to be gay, bury her up to her neck and have 25 men throw stones at her head until she is dead seems unfathomable."
He adds, "Another question is 'isn't this about a bunch of rich people staying away from hotels that I could never afford?'. These are very expensive hotels, but the bulk of their business isn't individuals but companies. I've been to these hotels when I was doing press events set up by the studios. I don't know any companies that want to put money in the pocket of a murderer once they know. Now they know."
"It is also true that the Sultan won't be terribly hurt by a boycott but the scores of companies he funnels money through will distance themselves. That's what a boycott does...".
"You can't make the bad guys be good, but you can stop the good guys from being complicit. Let me just paint you a picture, 20 years from now you or your kids are asked 'is it true that the guy that owned all of these great hotels was stoning gay people to death?' And you say 'yes'. The next question will be 'and you still went there?'."