GLAAD Media Awards: CEO warns Hollywood ‘There’s no more time to sit on the sidelines’
The media watchdog GLAAD had their Media Awards last night and while it was a star studded affair, there were some serious topics to discuss. GLAAD CEO Sarah Kate Ellis was not pulling ANY punches.
In light of Disney’s relatively poor handling of the so called ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill in Florida, she said:“Don’t wait until you’re in the hot seat. There’s no more time to sit on the sidelines. We need Hollywood on the front lines, fighting for our rights and telling our stories.”
Clearly not letting the Hollywood off the hook, she continued say they needed: “to take meaningful action and will soon convene the biggest brands, agencies, studios and streamers together with two goals: one, to commit to improving the quantity, quality and diversity of LGBTQ images, especially in kids and family programming. And, two, to speak out against anti-LGBTQ legislation in favor of rights like the Equality Act.”
Despite naming many advances about how far America has come in terms of eradicating social stigma about HIV, working with major social media platforms and the fact that roughly 200 out queer actors had RSVP’d to walk the Media Awards’ red carpet, Ellis had to highlight some of the horrors that are occurring elsewhere.
She said: “In just one day, on March 8, the Florida Senate passed the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, which was signed into law this past week. The South Dakota Senate passed a bill that bans discussion of ‘divisive concepts’ like race and sex in college courses. The Idaho House of Representatives passed a bill that would send librarians to jail if they let minors check out books that include LGBTQ topics. And the New Jersey Supreme Court denied an appeal that would bar a religious organization from offering so-called ‘conversion therapy’. This all happened not in one month, not in one week, but all in one day.’
While awards are fun a glittery and chock full of celebs, the message here is vital. There is real damage and pain being inflicted on LGBTQ+ in so many other parts of the country. Other parts of the country that just happen to be run by self serving, nonsense spewing charlatans ready to throw queer kids under the bus for a few votes.
Here is GLAAD CEO Sarah Kate Ellis speaking at the awards back in 2019. How the world has changed since then: