Elizabeth Taylor accepted the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award for her AIDS fund-raising efforts on behalf of the “real heroes”–“the men, women and children with AIDS who are waging incredibly valiant battles for their lives.”

Taylor got a standing ovation as she received the honorary Oscar.

Taylor called the award “the highest accolade I can receive from my peers, and for doing something I just have to do. Tonight, I am asking for your help. I call upon you to draw from the depths of your being — to prove that we are a human race, to prove that our love outweighs our need to hate, that our compassion is more compelling than our need to blame.”

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