Hillary Clinton announced the appointment of daytime television host Ellen DeGeneres as a Special Envoy for Global AIDS Awareness during a major address about achieving the goal of an AIDS free generation at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland this morning.
Ellen DeGeneres, an out lesbian and the successful host of the “Ellen Generes Show,” a daytime television program, who has achieved near iconic status in America, originally made her fame through stand up comedy.
In a letter, Clinton wrote to DeGeneres:
“By lending us your energy, compassion, and star power to serve as our Special Envoy for Global AIDS Awareness, your words will encourage Americans in joining you to make their voices heard in our campaign to achieve an AIDS free generation. The enormous platform of your television show and your social media channels will enable you to reach millions of people with the strong and hopeful message that we can win this
DeGeneres’ statement on her appointment:
“I’m honored to have been chosen by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton as Special Envoy for Global AIDS awareness. The fight against AIDS is something that has always been close to my heart. And I’m happy that I can use my platform to educate people and spread hope. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go look up what ‘envoy’ means.”
The State Department took advantage to harness DeGeneres’ celebrity immediately in touting the appointment, stating that the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program was “thrilled that we have someone like Ellen DeGeneres on our team to raise awareness that we are on the path to beating this devastating disease. We at PEPFAR look forward to working with her to deliver a positive and hopeful message that we can work together to put an end to AIDS.”
During the speech, Hillary Clinton laid out a path to a generation free of AIDS thatmeans that “virtually no children are born with the virus; that as these children become teenagers and adults, they are at afar lower risk of becoming infected than they would be today, thanks to a wide range of prevention tools; and finally that if they do acquire HIV, they have access to treatment that helps prevent them from developing AID Sand passing the virus to others.”
Clinton outlined three major steps to take to make this goal possible that include:1) Prevention of mother to child transmission;2) Voluntary medical male circumcision and 3) Treatment as prevention.
Hillary Clinton continues to elevate the role of American statecraft and in today’s announcement she also tips her hat to Ellen DeGeneres, one of America’s best ambassadors and role models, who happens to be gay.
Story courtesy: The New Civil Rights Movement