After George W. Bush and Ellen DeGeneres were spotted together at a Dallas Cowboys game, the talk show host took to the airwaves to defend herself from the fierce backlash.
Ellen, who is known for being gay, was spotted in the owner’s box with Bush, who once called for a constitutional ban on gay marriage and backed multiple pieces of legislation seen as harmful to the gay community.
Ellen addressed the unfolding controversy on the Tuesday episode of her talk show. “So, this weekend, I went to Dallas for the Cowboys game,” the talk show host began, “and it may not seem like a big deal for a celebrity to attend a football game, but I never leave my house. So it is a big deal,” she joked, to some scattered laughter.
“So , there were a hundred thousand people in this stadium. Portia and I were invited by Charlotte Jones – she’s the daughter of Jerry Jones, who owns the Dallas Cowboys.” She paused for a moment to gather her thoughts.
“So, I gotta say, when we were invited, I was aware that I was going to be surrounded by people with different views and beliefs,” Ellen prefaced her next statement. “But during the game, they showed a shot of George and me laughing together, so people were upset.”
“They thought why is a gay Hollywood liberal sitting next to a conservative Republican president. A lot of people were mad, and they did what people do when they’re mad: they tweet.” Ellen concluded by stating that not only is she friends with George Bush, she is also friends with lots of people who share different viewpoints from her.
For many, this explanation sounds hollow. Some found Ellen’s statements to be hypocritical. As a very wealthy and famous TV personality, her status as a gay woman is less of a social stigma, some argued.
Ellen’s decision to include openly conservative people like Adam Yenser on her staff and to spend time hanging out with a former conservative president can come across as a bit hypocritical.