Elton John is lending his voice to the ongoing drama surrounding Ellen DeGeneres and her befriending of former President George W. Bush. Addressing the controversy while promoting his upcoming autobiography Me in an interview with NPR, the singer joined the likes of Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Garner, and Jamie Foxx in supporting the talk show host.
“I admire Ellen for standing up and saying what she said,” John told the outlet. “George Bush has made a lot of mistakes. I made a lot of mistakes. Ellen DeGeneres has made a lot of mistakes. People need to come together […] They need to respect people’s view on life. Except when it’s heresy, and I don’t think George Bush is that kind of guy.”
Last weekend, DeGeneres sparked backlash after she was spotted sitting next to the former president at the Dallas Cowboys-Green Bay Packers NFL game. Quickly going viral on social media, many criticized the moment, pointing out that Bush held anti-LGBT stances throughout his presidency and has been called a "war criminal" following his actions in the Iraq War.
DeGeneres quickly addressed the criticism, calling for tolerance in a segment that aired on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
“Here’s the thing: I’m friends with George Bush. In fact, I’m friends with a lot of people who don’t share the same beliefs that I have. We’re all different and I think that we’ve forgotten that we’re all different,” she explained. “For instance, I wish people wouldn’t wear fur. I don’t like it, but I’m friends with people who wear fur and I’m friends with people who are furry, as a matter of fact.”
“But just because I don’t agree with someone on everything doesn’t mean I’m not gonna be friends with them,” she continued. “When I say ‘be kind to one another,’ I don’t mean only the people that think the same way you do. I mean be kind to everyone. It doesn’t matter."
The talk show host’s comments only sparked further outrage, with many slamming them as showcasing class solidarity. DeGeneres did, however, gain plenty of support from her fellow celebrities, including Witherspoon, who called DeGenres’ statements “an important reminder,” Garner, who called DeGeneres “amazing” for her comments, and Foxx, who called her words “Soooo needed and Necessary.”
In the wake of their support, celebrities coming to DeGeneres’ defense have also faced backlash. DeGeneres has not yet responded to the second round of criticism.
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