Ellen

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The Advocate reminds us that Ellen taught us how to fight Trump 20 years ago:

When Ellen DeGeneres came out in 1997 -- on the cover of Time magazine, in an interview on The Oprah Winfrey Show, and then in an episode of her ABC sitcom Ellen -- it was a watershed moment in culture. In "The Puppy Episode," she (and her character) were among the first to come out on a television show, an event that attracted a record number of viewers upon its airing. [...]

Her network, ABC, not having a playbook for what to do with a lesbian actor playing a lesbian character, placed a parental advisory on Ellen episodes. In 1998 the series was cancelled after ratings dipped.

"Since DeGeneres's coming-out," the piece continues, "other media figures -- many inspired by her courage and success -- have also left the closet:"

DeGeneres's bravery in coming out and being vocal is undeniable. But as they say, it takes a village. Her success also required the support of Hollywood power players behind the scenes who were willing to take a risk. Over two decades ago, the network ABC was not obliged to approve and air DeGeneres's coming-out story. But it did so anyway. While the show was canceled a year later due to a drop in ratings, the courage of producers and executives to stand by and promote their lesbian star changed what was possible for storylines on television.

The takeaway lesson is simply that "Hollywood, LGBT people, and their allies -- in addition to being gayer -- must be louder in demanding rights in the face of adversity."

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on January 11, 2017 11:51 AM.

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