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Melissa McCarthy And HBO Max Forced To Apologize After Giving $20k Donation To Controversial Group

In celebration of her upcoming film, Superintelligence, Melissa McCarthy and her husband Ben Falcone teamed up with HBO Max to launch a new campaign called 20 Days of Kindness.

The goal? To highlight different nonprofits and donate $20k to a different cause for 20 days. Obviously this sounds harmless enough, right? Who could possibly find something wrong with this? The internet, that’s who.

But in the internet’s defense, they may have a strong case with this one. One of the groups McCarthy and HBO Max donated to was Exodus Cry, which describes itself as an organization that “exists to combat sex trafficking and all forms of commercial sexual exploitation.”

What’s wrong with that? Well, the founder/CEO of the organization, Benjamin Nolot, has made some pretty controversial statements in the past.

For instance, according to Vice, Nolot called marriage for same-sex couples ‘an unspeakable offense to God’ in a since-deleted tweet in 2013. Per CTV News, Nolot also referred to abortion as ‘the modern-day holocaust’ in another since-deleted tweet that same year.

So yeah, not exactly the most welcoming dude on the planet. Several news outlets and just random people on Twitter called out McCarthy and HBO Max, and to their credit, they responded to the criticism.

In a video posted to Instagram, McCarthy admitted to not doing enough research on these organizations.

We made a mistake and we backed a charity that, upon proper vetting, stands for everything that we do not. So, I want to thank everyone on social media who said, ‘What are you doing? Are you sure you want to back this?’ Because the answer is no we do not.

We are so incredibly grateful for you ringing the bell and helping us be better. We’re sorry for our mistake. Oh boy, are we sorry for it. Can’t believe that we missed it.

It kinda sounds like sarcasm written down, but if you watch the video, you’ll see that she’s sincere.

It’s worth noting that the CEO, Nolot, has since apologized for his comments years ago. He claims he loves the LGBTQ community.

I love, respect and advocate for the right of all people to be free from all forms of oppression. Without question that includes the LGBTQ community. I hope that the LGBTQ community can understand that I value them and that my heart toward them is one of love, compassion, and respect. I want to make clear that I fully embrace the LGBTQ community as a group that deserves all of the rights that protect their dignity, safety and equality.

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