Elton John, who shares two children with his husband, is calling for a boycott of Dolce & Gabbana after the fashion house's lead designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana made disparaging comments about same-sex parents and babies conceived via artificial insemination.
The top designers, who are also gay and were once a couple, had made their remarks to Italian magazine Panorama in an interview published last week.
"You are born to a mother and a father. Or at least that's how it should be," Dolce said. "I call children of chemistry, synthetic children. Rented wombs, semen chosen from a catalog."
The company gave the following statement to Reuters late Sunday: "We believe firmly in democracy and we think freedom of expression is essential for that. We talked about our way of looking at the world, but it was not our intention to express a judgement on other people's choices. We believe in freedom and love."
An Instagram account said to belong to Gabbana posted a message saying, "This is ️the real respect for a different opinion????"
The page also features screenshots of supportive comments made by readers, who have used the hashtag #BoycottJohn. Many people have been debating the issue of artificial insemination and IVF amongst themselves in comments posted on both his and John's accounts.
How dare you refer to my beautiful children as "synthetic". And shame on you for wagging your judgemental little fingers at IVF - a miracle that has allowed legions of loving people, both straight and gay, to fulfil their dream of having children. Your archaic thinking is out of step with the times, just like your fashions. I shall never wear Dolce and Gabbana ever again. #BoycottDolceGabbana
Right on Elton and David http://t.co/qmORSvTnUe My D&G shirts are going in the bin- don't want ANYONE to wear them— Martina Navratilova (@Martina) March 15, 2015