Justin Timberlake is a Hollywood golden boy, but even he makes mistakes.
The actor-singer pulled down a tweet he sent wishing Madonna a happy birthday, according to “Us Weekly.”
The since-deleted message allegedly read, “A happiest of Bdays to my mother chucking ninja, @Madonna!! Hope you have a great one, M!”
Fans called JT out for what they considered to be a tone-deaf message in the wake of the events in Ferguson, Missouri.
In pop culture, “ninja” has reportedly become a commonly used substitute for the N-word. For example, “Us” cites Katy Perry using the word in a cover of Kanye West’s “N****s in Paris.”
After deleting the tweet, Timberlake shared a message regarding Michael Brown’s death and the ensuing protests.
“The world is watching #Ferguson. [And we pray.],” the post he retweeted from musician Matt Morris read.
Madonna herself apologized earlier this year after being called out for her problematic use of the N-word, upon using it to refer to her son on Instagram.