NEW YORK — Pop icon Madonna, dressed in a replica of a cub scout uniform, presented CNN’s Anderson Cooper with an award for openly gay media professionals at the 24th annual GLAAD Media Awards in New York City last night.
Cooper was presented with GLAAD’s Vito Russo Award, but not before Madonna took shots at the Boy Scouts of America, calling thier ban on gay scouts and gay and lesbian scout members, “fucked up.”
The Vito Russo Award is presented to an openly LGBT media professional who has made a significant difference in promoting equality.
Cooper accepted the award, saying “I’ve had so many blessings in my life, and being gay is certainly one of the greatest blessings. It has allowed me to love and to be loved and to help open my head and my heart in ways I could never have predicted. The ability to love one another, the ability to love another person is, in my opinion, one of God’s greatest gifts, and I thank God every day for enabling me to give and share love with the people in my life – my family, and my friends, and my partner Benjamin.”
GLAAD President Herndon Graddick says Madonna and Cooper are longtime friends who have both used their careers to support lesbian, gay and transgender people.
Cooper declined to speak publicly about his sexuality for years. But last July he gave blogger Andrew Sullivan permission to publish an email in which Cooper said he was gay and “couldn’t be more happy.”
“By sharing his own experiences as a gay man, Anderson has reminded millions of Americans that LGBT people are part of their everyday lives and an integral part of our cultural fabric,” said Graddick. “He continues to raise the bar and set a new standard for journalists everywhere, and I’m proud to call him a friend.”
Other GLAAD Award recipients include:
Ally Award: Brett Ratner
Outstanding Drama Series: Smash (NBC)
Outstanding Documentary: How to Survive a Plague (Sundance Selects)