Anthony Joshua has react back at criticism of his impassioned speech at Saturday’s Black Lives Matter rally in his home town of Watford.
World heavyweight champion Joshua spoke out against looting and rioting and urged demonstrators to protest peacefully during the march, which was held in the wake of George Floyd’s death last month.
While the 30-year-old’s address garnered plenty of support on social media, he also faced a backlash after reading out a speech from somebody who could not attend.
An excerpt from the speech was uploaded to social media in which Joshua said: “Show them where it hurts.
“Abstain from spending your money in their shops and economies, and invest in black-owned businesses.”
The excerpt attracted some fierce criticism, with some labeling the speech as racist and others saying they would boycott Joshua’s pay-per-view fights.
But Joshua has taken to Twitter to defend himself, clarifying that he was reading out somebody else’s words, and pointing out that he also spoke personally about investing in his community to help forge unity.
Here is Joshua’s tweet on Sunday evening :-
“If you think I’m a racist, go f**k yourself!
“If you watch the full video, the speech was passed around for someone to read and I took the lead.
“I personally spoke from the heart about the Watford community, ideas of us personally investing seven figures to create unity and opportunities and adding change to the African/Caribbean community.
“Shops aren’t the issue here. Before you talk s**t, you better boycott racism.
“I said what I said and will act to make the change.”