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Singer Hozier: The Catholic Church 'Provides a Justification for Homophobia'


In his first longform U.S. interview, the Irish singer of 'Take Me to Church' proves again he's our ally.

In late 2014, Irish singer-songwriter Hozier found his footing on the global stage with his rousing single "Take Me to Church," and before long, the song and its video railing against LGBT oppression in Russia were both bona fide hits. Eventually the single even earned a Grammy nomination for Song of the Year.

This week Hozier gave his first longform American interview to Kelly Osbourne, who was filling in for host Larry King on Ora TV's Larry King Live. During their chat, the singer spoke passionately about the plight of LGBT people worldwide and called out the Catholic Church for its centuries-long role in LGBT persecution.

Hozier told Osbourne writing 'Take Me to Church" was a "human rights thing."

"What is frightening about Russia is it is not that far from home. Especially if you are in Europe, and cultures like that cross borders. They have done in the past. This kind of scapegoating of and othering of one group in society, that has happened before in the past in Europe not that long ago."

Hozier also said he wasn't impressed with Pope Francis's stance on homosexuality:

"This is one of the paradoxes and weird hypocrisy of that organization. [Pope Francis] came out last year and said, 'Who am I to judge with regards to somebody's sexual orientation?' I think it is important to differentiate between lip service towards something and actually making change. I think it's hopeful, but saying that in 2015, 'Who am I to judge?' is something that you should be saying 100 years ago. It shouldn't have never been said at all, really."

He also called out the Catholic Church for institutionalizing homophobia:

"[The Catholic Church] is undeniably an organization that has institutionalized an aversion to homosexuality. One that has institutionalized gender inequality also, dangerous policy over contraception, and in this case, it still harbors an irrational aversion to homosexuality. Which, in my view, I think that is why I was driven to write 'Take Me to Church.' I think the church provides a justification for homophobia."

Watch Hozier's interview with Osbourne below:

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