In a revealing interview conducted in November 2019, YouTuber James Charles has opened up about being labeled a “predator” amid his drama with fellow YouTuber Tati Westbrook.
Drama between the two make-up and beauty YouTubers started to unfurl in April 2019, when Charles made an Instagram story promoting a rival product to Tati’s supplement brand. Tati expressed her disappointment and hurt, forcing Charles to write out an explanation and apology shortly after.
Then it escalated, and in May 2019 Tati Westbrook released a 40-minute video – now private on Tati’s channel – explaining the entire ordeal and then accusing Charles of coercing straight men into doing sexual acts with him.
Naturally, this led to a lot of speculation on the internet and accusations being made of Charles, being labeled a “predator” by his detractors – and how he’s opened up about it.
In an interview with Paper Magazine, Charles said:
“The reality is that the ‘hook-up’ that was being discussed was completely consensual. It was with a boy who told me that he was bisexual and later on told the world he was bisexual. Therefore there’s nothing wrong with that.”
Speaking on cancel culture and the hate he faced following the drama, he said: "There’s no other word to describe it other than just toxic. It’s so toxic. It’s behavior that should not be tolerated. And it’s so easy to forget that when you’re tweeting these people, there’s a real person behind the other screen that’s looking at that. … It could truly push someone over the edge."
What is most concerning is Charles saying how this could “truly push someone over the edge.”
Though it’s not quite clear what exactly he meant by this, he later said that he was “so grateful to be surrounded by close friends and family that were checking on me all day long, every single day, in the middle of the night, every 10 minutes to make sure I didn't do something that I could never take back.”
The implications of the effect the hate, drama and cancel culture had on James are concerning, and everyone involved is lucky he never did something he “could never take back.”
It appears that, despite the immediate aftermath of the issues between James Charles and Tati Westbrook, Charles is starting to return to a better place but admits that he still doesn’t feel “back to normal.”
Speaking of the future, Charles says he wants to move into bigger productions and explore singing and tour opportunities, believing his fans will follow him regardless of what he does next.