Following the death of actor Robin Williams on Monday, KISS bass player Gene Simmons made some very derogatory and insulting comments about people who suffer from depression. Here is an excerpt:
The bassist goes on to add, “For people who are depressed, there is a way out. There are many, many ways out. And I don’t want people to listen to an interview from a rock star, who’s telling you the only way out is out, when I’m telling you, and I wrote it in ‘The Heroin Diaries,’ you can get out of this. One in 10 Americans are affected by depression at one point in their life, so this is another thing to think about. At one point in your life, meaning it will come and it will go … they say all bad things must pass, all bad things will pass, so keep that in the back of your mind if you’re feeling depression, and don’t listen to people who don’t know what they’re talking about.”
Check out Sixx’s full conversation with co-host Jenn Marino in the player provided at this location.
But now Gene has made a statement via his official Facebook page which can be read below:
I want to make this statement about my views on depression for the record and to clarify my prior remarks.
“To the extent my comments reported by the media speak of depression, I was wrong and in the spur of the moment made remarks that in hindsight were made without regard for those who truly suffer the struggles of depression. I sincerely apologize to those who were offended by my comments. I recognize that depression is very serious and very sad when it happens to anyone, especially loved ones. I deeply support and am empathetic to anyone suffering from any disease, especially depression.
I have never sugarcoated my feelings regarding drug use and alcoholics. Somewhere along the line, my intention of speaking in very directly and perhaps politically incorrectly about drug use and alcoholics has been misconstrued as vile commentary on depression. Unkind statements about depression was certainly never my intention. Fully, you will know that and I do not intend to defend myself here and now, by listing the myriad charities and self-help organizations I am involved with. Rather, I simply want to be clear that my heart goes out to anyone suffering from depression and I deeply regret any offhand remarks in the heat of an interview that might have suggested otherwise.”