Tuesday’s Washington Post honored lesbian comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres for “A comic’s courage” to come out of the closet. So did the Kennedy Center people who selected her to win the Mark Twain Prize. She did not disappoint the liberals.
On the awards show (taped for PBS), she made a “sly nod toward Mitt Romney’s sentiments” with the joke, “Thank you, PBS. I’m so glad to be part of your final season.” She also told Politico Romney made her “very, very scared” for women for many reasons (on which she apparently didn't have the "courage" to elaborate):
“If you’re a woman, you should be very, very scared of that, for many reasons,” she said. “And obviously as a gay person he doesn’t believe in me having the same rights, so of course I’m not happy about that.”
DeGeneres added that “as a woman who wants to have the choice to do what she wants to do with her own body,” she’s especially concerned about Obama losing. “I am certainly hoping our president stays put.”
Ellen’s donated $5,000 to Obama and the maximum of $30,800 to the Democratic National Committee.
Post reporter Paul Farhi found the Kennedy Center ceremony honored Ellen’s “courage” to advocate for sexual liberalism just as much if not more than the comedy:
“I’m pretty darn sure I could not have the career I have, that I could not live as openly as I’ve lived, if it hadn’t been for you,” said “Glee” star Jane Lynch. “You really took one for the team” in revealing her sexuality on her first sitcom.
“She went from stand-up to standing for something,” said Lily Tomlin, herself a former Mark Twain recipient.
Jimmy Kimmel described DeGeneres as America’s “lesbian friend.” (He also said, “Thanks to Ellen, vests aren’t just for magicians anymore.”)
“You’ve changed America,” declared Sean Hayes, who described himself and Ellen as part of the “Jeopardy!” category called Gay Sitcom Stars. “You’ve changed the world. We didn’t have a voice until there was you.”
Pop singer Jason Mraz put his praise for Ellen in somewhat awkward verse: “In the fight for equality, welcome aboard. We appreciate your comedy, you deserve this award.” Then he sang a song including a word infrequently heard at the Kennedy Center and guaranteed to be bleeped from the PBS broadcast....
On the red carpet before the event, Ellen’s friends abounded with more praise for the honoree.
Lynch (taller than you expected, as DeGeneres is shorter than you’d expect), said DeGeneres succeeded because “she’s so honest about herself. She’s self-deprecating, but you know she feels good about herself. And that makes us feel very close to her.”
Tomlin, also a lesbian, said she admired and appreciated DeGeneres’s “contributions to changing attitudes in this country.” She said DeGeneres’s revelation not only came at the right time but from the right messenger. “She’s so adorable. . . . History was thrust upon [her], and she had the courage to do it.”
Farhi also paid tribute to the comedian in her "modest tux," saying she earned the Mark Twain Award for one joke after 9/11:
DeGeneres probably deserves a Twain award just for one legendary quip. While hosting the Emmy Awards just after the terrorist attacks of 2001, she asked, “What would bug the Taliban more than seeing a gay woman in a suit surrounded by Jews?”
Farhi didn't include the comic's "courage" to bash Romney on the red carpet. Nowhere in the Post article was there a balancing, "discouraging word" from conservatives.