R&B singer Usher has defended Justin Bieber’s racist comments that he made when he was 15-years-old.

Saturday, Usher took to his Instagram account to explain that the Biebz was just a kid, and so it’s okay that he made a mistake and used the N-word, joked about joining the Ku Klux Klan and also joked about killing black people.

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Ignorance and racism as any age has never been an acceptable excuse before, so why is Usher defending the now 20-year-old pop star?

His post was accompanied with a picture of the two when Bieber was much younger. The full post reads, “At my core, I am a person that supports growth and understands without judgement, that growth often comes as a result of pain and continues effort. As I have watched Justin Bieber navigate difficult waters as a young man, I can tell you that he hasn’t always chosen the path of his greatest potential, but he is unequivocally not a racist. What he was 5 years ago was a naive child who did not understand the negative power and degradation that comes from playing with racial slurs. What he is now is a young man faced with an opportunity to become his best self, an example to the millions of kids that follow him to not make the same mistakes.”

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The first offending video shows Bieber making a racist joke and using the N-word, and was unearthed by the British tabloid, The Sun, last week after which Bieber issued an immediate apology, saying, ”I’m very sorry. I take all my friendships with people of all cultures very seriously and I apologize for offending or hurting anyone with my childish and inexcusable behavior.”

The second video shows him changing the words in “One Less Lonely Girl” to “One Less Lonely N-word.” While Bieber has yet to address that clip, the song was written by Usher.

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While we wait for Bieber’s second apology, we’ll also ponder exactly why Usher is handing him a get-out-of-jail-free card.

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