Love is Love!

Love is Love!

by intern Elana Levitan
Photo credit: intern Andrew Dubbs

The Human Rights Campaign Gala was the proof that one group of people, working towards a cause, can make a difference. The organizers and those who aid this cause understand what it means to fight – most of them have fought their whole lives to face the discrimination that the ignorant have shown to those who are gay or lesbian or different in any way. 


Among those being honored was super star Jennifer Lopez, the Prop. 8 plaintiffs and attorneys, Kris Perry, Sandy Stier, Paul Katami, Jeff Zarrillo, David Boies, and Ted Olson.  


While the night was clearly full of glitz, glamour and fun, that was not what should be taken away from this event.  Yes, they had a silent and live auction, yes there was an incredible live performance by the artist Sara Bareilles, yes there was a drawing for a Lexus, but that was not what should stand out.  What should stand out through all that is the inspirational work and words of the people at the event.  

The overturning of Prop 8 and the destruction of DOMA by the Supreme Court was a huge step that will always remain as milestone in history, but this is just he beginning. 

Chad Griffin, the president of the Human Rights Campaign set “a goal to bring all marriage equality to all fifty states in the next five years.”  For even though this was a step forward there is still plenty of hatred in country that “divides out [the] country into two Americas,” as Mr. Griffin described.  It is an image we are all accustomed to after the civil war. 


Chad Griffin

The final image that Chad Griffin left everyone with was a powerful one of the need to have acceptance for all those people out there alone.  His exact words were that “he or she will go into their rooms, turn out the lights, get into bed falling asleep while staring at the ceiling all night fearing the potential doom of the next day.”


Jennifer Lopez

One of the true stars of the night was Jennifer Lopez, a woman who has worked her way from Jenny from the block to the worldwide super star of Jennifer Lopez.

Along with J-Lo was the cast of the hit TV show The Fosters, the #1 new cable TV series of the summer with millennials. The Fosters is a compelling, one-hour drama about a multi-ethnic family mix of foster and biological kids being raised by two moms. Lopez was on the receiving end of a boycott campaign from One Million Moms, a project of the radically anti-LGBT group American Family Association.  The show is produced by Ms. Lopez who describes it as “a story about a bi-racial same sex couple who embrace foster care and foster parenting and have more then enough love to go around.”  She expressed the hope for the show “to constantly push the boundaries.” 


The Fosters

The Human Rights Campaign awarded the Ally for Equality Award to Jennifer Lopez.  “Jennifer Lopez embodies the spirit of an ally to the LGBT community and we are thrilled to present her the Ally for Equality at our National Dinner in October,” said HRC president Chad Griffin.  “We recognize Jennifer for her talent, style, compassion, philanthropy and generosity, but foremost for her public commitment to LGBT equality.”  Ms. Lopez went on to prove that she deserved the award by expressing the understanding that “the work for equality is not even close to being done” and that “as an artist [she] believe[s] and has always believed that through art we can change the world.”  This is a dream she is always working towards.


The event was moving for everyone in the audience and there was not one person there that could say they didn’t shed a tear from being so moved.  It’s true that there is a great deal of work to be done, but as was proved by HRC, there are plenty of people willing to stand up and fight for what is right. 


The HRC National Dinner drew about 3,400 guests and was held the at the Washington Convention Center.

As Jennifer Lopez said, “Love is Love.”  It is truly as simple as that.