Kerry Washington GLAAD Awards Video: Watch Fiery Speech About Discrimination

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Kerry Washington GLAAD Awards Speech Video

By Shari Weiss |

Kerry Washington GLAAD Awards Speech Video

(Getty Images)

Kerry Washington gave a powerful and fiery speech at Saturday’s GLAAD Media Awards, where she received the Vanguard Award for promoting LGBT rights. Watch below.

The 26th annual ceremony was a star-studded event at the Beverly Hilton, with celebrities including Viola Davis and Zoe Saldana in attendance. The awards “recognize and honor media for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community and the issues that affect their lives.” Winners included The Imitation Game, The Normal Heart, “How To Get Away With Murder,” “Days of Our Lives,” and “Transparent.” Roland Emmerich also received the Stephen F. Kolzak Award, presented to the filmmaker by Channing Tatum.

There was a music performance by Alex Newell, a silent auction, and plenty of jokes from host Tig Notaro, but Washington’s speech was the big highlight of the night. After an introduction from Ellen DeGeneres, the actress began by explaining that she knew that afterward people will “click a link to hear what the woman from ‘Scandal’ said at that award show, so I think some stuff needs to be said.”

Washington went on to speak about how her roles often become political statements, and advocated for more “LGBT representation” in the media, both “in front of and behind the camera.” The star, who received a standing ovation before she was even finished with her remarks, argued that minority groups need to come together to fight against discrimination. “When black people today tell me that they don’t believe in gay marriage,” Washington said, “I say, ‘People used to say stuff like that about you and your love.'” She continued, “We must be allies, and we must be allies in this business. Because to be represented is to be humanized.”

“In the real world, being an other is the norm. In the real world, the only norm is uniqueness, and our media must reflect that,” Washington said to another standing ovation. As Gossip Cop reported at the time, Jennifer Lopez was last year’s Vanguard Award recipient. See full video of Washington’s passionate speech below, and tell us what you think.


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