Bill Clinton Eases Tension at GLAAD Awards

Bill Clinton Talks DOMA at GLAAD

Leonardo DiCaprio, Charlize Theron also show support at gala

There was clear tension in the room when Bill Clinton started talking about the Defense of Marriage Act at the 24th GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles. It erupted just once at the April 20 gathering when someone from the back of the JW Marriott ballroom called out, “You signed it!”

Otherwise, Clinton received a hearty welcome from the crowd, accepting GLAAD’s Advocate for Change kudo. And while Clinton never addressed signing DOMA directly, he did make his current position clear: “Over the years, I was forced to confirm the fact that people who oppose equal rights for gays based on the marriage issue are basically acting out of concern for their own identity, not out of respect for anyone else.

“I believe you will win the DOMA fight,” Clinton added.

The former president thanked his daughter, Chelsea, who surprised the audience with her appearance. She presented her father with the award, and the pair walked off stage arm in arm.

Leonardo DiCaprio and Charlize Theron preceded the Clintons to present entertainment lawyer Steve Warren with the Stephen F. Kolzak Award.

The night was far less stately earlier, with appearances from Betty White and Cloris Leachman, who had the winning bid at an auction for a kiss from White. But when Leachman went in to claim her prize (with tongue), White recoiled, saying, “I’m open minded, but I’m not ridiculous.”

Accepting the award for best film for “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” director-scribe Stephen Chbosky joked, “This will be the last awards show for ‘Perks,’ and the most meaningful because let’s face it, gays have the best taste.”

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  1. Bemused says:

    1) Clinton, as usual, is tendentious when he claims that opponents of gay marriage act exclusively out of malice or self-interest. Is it possible that many act out of concern for the historic institution of marriage? Of course. 2) GLAAD is now the ‘Red Channels’ of the Left: Grim, defensive, determined to punish minor deviations from the party line, destroy careers, end impose orthodoxy. How this is supposed to be in the self-interest of gays is a minor mystery.

  2. James says:

    He signed DOMA into law, and left leaning celebrities are gawking over him when he goverened as a fiscal conservative for the bulk of his presidency. Guess it’s just all about the (D) at the end of the name

  3. What I notice here is it seems they couldn’t find a gay person who would present Clinton with this award. Harvey Weinstein,not gay. Chelsea Clinton, not gay. Jennifer Lawrence, not gay. What award show was this?

    I wouldn’t have given Bill Clinton and award. I would have invited him to apologize for DOMA and then I would have asked the Clinton Global Initiative to get cracking on getting rights for gay people overseas. Get him on record in front of a group so he can’t wiggle out of it.

    An award? No.

  4. JUMP! says:

    Got AIDS?

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