Jennifer Lopez was honored by GLAAD, and the LGBT community with the Vanguard Award at the 25th annual Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) Media Awards in Los Angeles on Saturday. The award was principally for her work as executive producer on the ABC television series The Fosters.
The Fosters is about an interracial lesbian couple who are raising a family that consists of a disparate group of adopted/fostered children that number five in all. The show debuted on ABC Family last year on June 3, 2013 and has been approved for at least one more season.
The LGBT community have lauded the series, and its participants, with awards. The Fosters garnered the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Drama Series and Lopez scooped the GLAAD Vanguard Award. This modern look at family life is not popular with everyone however.
One Million Moms, a “hate” group have publicly condemned the television series and Jennifer Lopez as well for producing the show. The group have urged viewers to boycott the show as they are against lesbian themes. They released a statement saying that while adoption and fostering children are wonderful things, the show itself is attempting to “redefine” the role of marriage and families.
Lopez, when she accepted the award relayed the “inner dialogue” she had with herself at the beginning of her involvement with the show. The 40 year-old performer said that she wouldn’t “lie to you.” She did have some initial misgivings about doing the show saying that sometimes, as an artist in the public eye, “you don’t feel like getting beat up.”
Show business legend Rita Moreno presented Jennifer with the GLAAD Vanguard Award and she honored the singer for her work and for her reputation for not judging others. Moreno stated that Lopez receiving the award was ironic considering her work as a judge on American Idol.
Lopez and the ABC drama The Fosters were not the only award recipients of the evening. The Young Avengers comic, NBCs Days of Our Lives soap, reality program Big Freedia: Queen of Bounce, musical artists Sara and Tegan, Norman Lear and the transgender star of Orange is the New Black Laverne Cox also received kudos by the end of the event.
The GLAAD awards honor individuals and shows that present accurate, fair and “inclusive” issues in media of the LGBT community. Lear, who is just as much a legend as Rita Moreno in the show business world was given the Pioneer Award for his producing groundbreaking sitcoms such as All in the Family, Maude and The Jeffersons.
Ellen Page, spoke publicly for the first time since her “coming out” on Valentines day this year. She stated that after her official reveal about her sexuality that she now feels able to publicly support the people who inspire her and give her courage.
GLAAD has awarded quite a number of artists before Jennifer Lopez was honored at the Saturday event. Other performers to have picked up awards from the LGBT watchdog organization have included Sir Ian McKellen, Ellen DeGeneres, Wanda Sykes, and Melissa Etheridge who have all been honored in the past. More award winners will be announced on May 3, 2014.
By Michael Smith