Friday, December 12, 2008

Tell The Academy - No Humanitarian Award for Comedian Jerry Lewis

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has chosen Jerry Lewis to receive the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian award to be given during the Oscar ceremony in February, 2009. The award "is given to an individual in the motion picture industry whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry," says the academy.

Controversy is building around the selection due to Lewis' repeated anti-gay slurs on television, including ones he made during his annual Muscular Dystrophy association telethon, and as recently as last October, on Australian TV, the latter shortly after an apology for his insults.

Many are in agreement that Lewis has done amazing things for those in need, but due to the recent passing of Prop 8, his recent slurs, and the fact that this is a humanitarian award, a call for the academy to change its choice has been made.

CALL TO ACTION: To voice your disapproval, contact AMPAS by emailing them at publicity@oscars.org or call them at (310) 247-3000.

Thanks for this guest post from our friends over at Unite The Fight.

7 comments:

jaysays said...

This is something that left me very distressed as I've always been a huge supporter of the work of MDA. A very dear friend of mine has continually received assistance from MDA since her diagnoses as a child. So, do I recognize the good work of MDA and support the efforts of Jerry Lewis or do I deny him because he hates me?

Unite the Fight! said...

My thoughts on this: the MDA has many great people that it employs and they do great work. I wouldn't deny the assistance of the MDA. However, with Jerry Lewis himself, casting slurs around, I think you can choose whether or not you agree with his receiving a humanitarian award as an individual.

Anonymous said...

Geezer Pass - The permission for anyone older than 70 to say sexist, racist, gay bashing things. Also know as the "lovable crazy old uncle rule".

Mr Lewis has obviously reach the point where his mouth says anything he thinks.

Anonymous said...

I would rather see the award go to Brad Pitt for all of his humanitarian work, especially New Orleans after Katrina. I do not think it appropriate to award Jerry Lewis at this time in history. That opportunity has passed.

Sister Sadie, Sadie, the Rabbi Lady - Ministry of Perpetual Indulgence said...

Raising a billion dollars for MDA is a wondrous thing but there is no excuse for bigotry and slur comments are a big part of that. I love Jerry Lewis but he has to be publicly admonished and shunned until he learns. After all, he's only human and he can still learn and grow like the rest of us.

Anonymous said...

Giving Jerry Lewis a humanitarian award for his work with muscular dystrophy is like giving China a humanitarian award because they hosted the Olympics!

The award is supposed to go to Jerry, not the MDA. If it were going to the MDA I would say let it stand, but it is not. It is going to a person who seems to be kind and generous on one hand and hateful and hurtful on the other. It's sort of ironic that, for every person with Muscular Dystrophy that he helps, he is harming another person who is gay or lesbian.

He may think his comments and jokes are harmless, but we all know that hate speech like his only serves to inspire homophobes to higher levels of hate and violence against our community. Shame on you Jerry Lewis...and moreover, shame on the Academy!

libhom said...

The way Lewis raises money for the MDA also is creepy. He's so condescending towards the people he raises money for.

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