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13 Celebs Who Really Said "Gay Rights" And Actually Backed It Up
They really said, "SLAYYY!"by Ab'ha Ahad
Hollywood has not always treated the LGBTQ+ community properly. From propagating harmful stereotypes to little or no representation in mainstream media, Hollywood has yet to make it up to the community.
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Although, there have been times when our favorite celebrities stood up for LGBTQ+ rights and backed it up with action. Here are 13 examples of how:
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1. Billy Porter
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In a video shared on his social media accounts in June 2020, the actor spoke out in support of Black, gay, and trans people joining the global Black Lives Matter protests.
"LGBTQ+ Black folks are Black people, too!" he said in the video. "Our lives matter, too! So this is my response to those of y'all who don't understand that: F*** you! And, yes, I am cussing. It's time for cussing."
A few months before, the actor had delivered the LGBTQ State of the Union speech. "Last year, I told you that the state of our union was strong," Porter noted. "And while it’s certainly been battered, our union is far from broken."
2. Ruby Rose
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Ruby Rose identifies as lesbian and gender fluid. Known for their roles in Orange Is the New Black and Batwoman, Rose is also an LGBTQ+ rights activist. In 2014, she made a short film called Break Free.
The movie sheds light on her own struggle with gender identity and fluidity and speaks to non-binary people out there. Produced, filmed, and written by Rose, the film shows the former model cutting chunks off her hair, removing her makeup, and revealing her tattooed arms.
3. Josh Hutcherson
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The Hunger Games star came out as bisexual in 2013 and is known for his work as an LGBTQ+ rights advocate. The actor is the founder of Straight But Not Narrow, a youth group aimed at fighting homophobia. The group was formed after two of his gay uncles died of AIDS.
In 2012, Hutcherson became the youngest person to receive the prestigious Vanguard Award at the GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles.
4. Lena Dunham
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Lena Dunham is famous for being vocal about her support for the LGBTQ+ community. In 2014, Dunham produced the HBO documentary, Suited, which explores the issues of gender identity.
In 2015, Dunham revealed to Ellen DeGeneres that she will not get married until gay marriage is legal in all 50 states in the US. "The idea of having a celebration that can't be fully shared among all the people in my life and all the people that we love just doesn't really feel like a celebration at all. Until that's something that everyone can join into with no sense of being left out on any level, politically, emotionally, it's just not something that we're gonna do," she declared.
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Another of the famous LGBTQ+ supporters in Hollywood, Beyoncé used her 2020 commencement speech as a part of YouTube Originals Dear Class of 2020 to speak to queer people around the world. "If you’re part of a group that’s called 'other' — a group that does not get the chance to be center stage — build your own stage, and make them see you," she said. "Your queerness is beautiful, your Blackness is beautiful, your compassion, your understanding, your fight for people who may be different from you is beautiful."
Over her career spanning two decades, Beyoncé has used her platforms to promote LGBTQ+ rights including hiring same-sex couples in her music videos and brands, including trans woman and actor Laverne Cox as a model for her Ivy Park clothing line.
6. Miley Cyrus
Vijat Mohindra / Vijat Mohindra / MTV VMAs 2020 via Getty Images
Pop icon Miley Cyrus is probably the most famous pansexual in the world right now. She has been vocal about her sexuality and uses her platforms to do the same.
Her organization Happy Hippie Foundation is focused on raising money and attention to fight homelessness. As the host of the 2015 MTV VMAs, Miley invited LGBT youth associated with the foundation to introduce the singer for the show's closing number which included several RuPaul's Drag Race queens.
7. Kerry Washington
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The actress who is known for her role in Scandal was honored with the Vanguard Award at the 2015 GLAAD Media Awards in March for being a notable ally of the LGBT community.
"We need more LGBT characters and more LGBT storytelling. We need more diverse LGBT representation, and by that, I mean lots of different kinds of LGBT people living all different kinds of lives. We need more employment of LGBT people in front of and behind the camera. … We have to continue to be bold and break new ground until that is just how it is until we are no longer 'first' and 'exceptions' and 'rare' and 'unique,'" she said during her acceptance speech.
8. Anne Hathaway
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The sister to a gay brother, Anne Hathaway is another notable famous LGBTQ+ ally from Hollywood. "There are people who have said that I’m being brave for being openly supportive of gay marriage, gay adoption — basically of gay rights — but with all due respect, I humbly dissent," Hathaway said during her 2018 Human Rights Campaign Ally Award acceptance speech. "I’m not being brave; I’m being a decent human being. And I don’t think I should receive an award for that or for merely stating what I believe to be true: that love is a human experience, not a political statement."
In 2012, after getting married to Adam Shulman, the couple sold their wedding photos and donated a share of the profits to marriage equality advocacy groups.
9. Daniel Radcliffe
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The Harry Potter star has been vocal about his support for the LGBTQ+ community countless times. In 2011, the actor was also honored with the Hero Award by the Trevor Project, a nonprofit organization that supports sexual minority youth for being an inspiration to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender teens.
He has also been named the Celebrity Straight Ally at the 2015 British LGBT Awards. "It's sad that an award for this needs to exist. It is odd and bizarre that I am essentially getting an award for displaying basic human decency in a sort of high-profile way," Radcliffe said during his acceptance video message. "I feel like a wonderful thing about our future will be that there will be nothing remarkable about a straight actor saying that he supports gay rights."
10. Matthew Morrison
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In 2013, Glee actor Matthew Morrison partnered with the Human Rights Campaign in support of LGBT equality and donated partial proceeds from the sale of his album Where It All Began to benefit the organization. "At this decisive moment, when there is so much work still ahead, I’m standing with HRC and LGBT people across the country until this fight is won," he said explaining his decision.
11. Brad Pitt
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Before the nationwide legalization of gay marriage in the United States, the actor, along with his then partner, Angelina Jolie, donated $100,000 to the Human Rights Campaign to support the organization's same-sex marriage efforts.
In a 2012 email to the HRC, Pitt said, "It's unbelievable to me that people's lives and relationships are literally being voted on in a matter of days. Every person's right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness is enshrined in our country's Declaration of Independence, but powerful, well-funded groups are flooding the airwaves with lies trying to take away those rights from certain people…and we can't stand for it."
12. Lady Gaga
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Definitely one of the most prolific supporters of the LGBTQ community, at this point, Lady Gaga is kind of like an honorary member of the queer community. The Born This Way singer launched the Born This Way Foundation, an anti-bullying nonprofit organization, in 2012, the name of which plays off of her hit single.
13. Dan Levy
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Dan Levy created his pansexual character David Rose in Schitt's Creek as a response to the lack of pansexual representation in mainstream media. David's explanation for pansexuality is still one of the most celebrated explanations of pansexuality.