During Wednesday’s episode of “The Talk,” Sharon Osbourne and Sheryl Underwood got into a heated debate surround Piers Morgan’s recent comments on Meghan Markle.
CBS has since launched an internal review on the issue.
“We are committed to a diverse, inclusive and respectful workplace,” the network said in a statement provided to PEOPLE on Friday night. “All matters related to the Wednesday episode of The Talk are currently under internal review.”
Osbourne, 68, says that she was accused of being a racist following her recent support for Morgan.
Morgan faced widespread backlash after he made comments about Markle’s interview with Oprah Winfrey. He also questioned her authenticity in discussing her mental health struggles on Good Morning Britain earlier this week.
Morgan, 55, was called out by his co-host Alex Beresford on-air, which caused him to storm offset. He later announced he would be leaving his post at the ITV morning news show.
“Did I like everything he said? Did I agree with what he said? No,” Osbourne said of Morgan’s remarks on The Talk. “It’s not my opinion … I support him for his freedom of speech, and he’s my friend.”
But Underwood questioned Osbourne, “What would you say to people who may feel that while you’re standing by your friend, it appears you gave validation or safe haven to something that he has uttered that is racist, even if you don’t agree?”
The two’s conversation quickly turned emotions after Osbourne asked Underwood to explain when Morgan had said something racist, PEOPLE reported.
“I will ask you again Sheryl, I’ve been asking you during the break and I’m asking you again, and don’t try and cry ’cause if anyone should be crying it should be me,” Osbourne said with tears in her eyes. “Educate me! Tell me when you have heard him say racist things.”
In which Underwood responded by saying, “it is not the exact words of racism, it’s the implication and the reaction to it.”
“To not want to address that because she is a Black woman, and to try to dismiss it or to make it seem less than what it is, that’s what makes it racist,” Underwood explained. “But right now, I’m talking to a woman I believe is my friend and I don’t want anybody here to watch this and think we are attacking you for being racist.”
Following the debate, Osbourne apologized for offending others by supporting Morgan.
“After some reflection, after sitting with your comments & sitting with my heart, I would like to address the discussion on The Talk this past Wednesday,” she posted to Twitter on Thursday night. “I have always been embraced with so much love & support from the black community & I have deep respect & love for the black community.”
“To anyone of color that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said, I am truly sorry. I panicked, felt blindsided, got defensive & allowed my fear & horror of being accused of being racist take over,” Osbourne continued. “There are very few things that hurt my heart more than racism so to feel associated with that spun me fast. I am not perfect, I am still learning like the rest of us & will continue to learn, listen and do better.”
Underwood, who says she considers Osbourne a “friend,” spoke out after the incident on her podcast “The World According to Sheryl,” adding that she kept her composure because of their friendship.
“I thought we were having a conversation like we normally do. But then I got a feeling that, wait a minute, this ain’t what it usually is,” she explained. “I also got another feeling of, okay, Sheryl, this is time for you to step up into the leadership position … this is time for you to show what you’re made of, and in a personal way. No matter what somebody says about you, I can show you something better than I can tell you.”
“I just wanted to be a better example for people that are working just a regular old job, that had to compose themselves,” she said during her appearance on The Steve Harvey Morning Show that same day.
“We are the only race of people that carry the race wherever we go, and we’re responsible for that,” she said. “And I want to thank everybody all over the world in social media, everybody in radio, television, news, everywhere, everybody that reached out.”