On Sunday as a guest of Charlotte Jones (daughter of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones) Ellen DeGeneres yucked it up with former President George W Bush while watching the Green Bay Packers beat up on the Dallas Cowboys.
When I saw the moment caught by the NFL on Fox broadcast, my initial thought was this is going to go viral on social media. I knew there were going to be a bunch of Twitter fingers angry seeing Ellen having a good time with Bush. And of course, the outrage mob didn’t let me down. As many questioned why the 2 were hanging together, others applauded the moment, for people of opposing views being capable of being civilized.
For me, I wanted to see if Ellen or Bush would speak on the chill session and not jump to conclusions and start calling anyone a sellout or giving out any praise.
With social media talking about the moment all-day Monday, Ellen decided to wait until Tuesday to speak on it during her show…
DeGeneres talked about what led to the moment and explained how she was invited and that she knew she would be in company of people with differing views.
“When we were invited, I was aware that I was going to be surrounded with people from very different views and beliefs. And I’m not talking about politics… I was rooting for the Packers,” DeGeneres joked. “So, I had to hide my cheese hat in Portia’s purse.”Fox News
Ellen went on to explain that she is friends with George Bush and how its about not only being kind to people with the same view points but to everyone
“Here’s the thing: I’m friends with George Bush. In fact, I’m friends with a lot of people who don’t share the same beliefs that I have,” DeGeneres continued. “We’re all different and I think that we’ve forgotten that that’s okay that we’re all different… but just because I don’t agree with someone on everything doesn’t mean that I’m not going to be friends with them.”Fox News
“When I say, ‘Be kind to one another,’ I don’t mean only the people that think the same way that you do. I mean be kind to everyone. Doesn’t matter.”Fox News
After watching Ellen’s explanation, my first thought was, “Awesome Ellen, but…”
“Different views and beliefs”?
I know it has been a while since Bush was president (2001-2009), but let’s not forget this is the same man that
- Opposed the legal recognition of same sex marriage and supported the idea of an amendment that would prohibit same-sex couples from obtaining legal recognition
- Threatened to veto the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) that would prohibit discrimination in hiring and employment based on sexual orientation or gender identity
- Threatened to veto the Hates Crime Prevention Act that expanded crimes motivated by a victim’s actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability
To me this is more than just different views and beliefs, and leaves Ellen open to criticism as an advocate for LGBTQ rights.
I’m not saying Ellen should have walked out of the suite when she saw Bush, or she should have brought up politics while watching the football game. If this is your “friend” then I hope you are challenging your friends’ dangerous views and beliefs. And that is something she never mentioned while asking us to be kind to everyone.
And while Ellen was giving cover to Bush, Dubya was thankful and appreciated his friend sticking up for him…
As one person on Twitter noted (unfortunately I don’t have their Twitter handle),
“I have to take issue with this, with all due respect. There’s nothing wrong with being friends with people of different beliefs, but there IS something wrong with being friends with someone who has hurt you and your community without remorse or a change,”
This is what I am talking about, Ellen defends their friendship and Bush continues to stand by his anti-gay record while receiving praise for being able to have a chill session with his lesbian friend
If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!