Last night, Beyoncé and husband Jay-Z were honoured during the annual GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) Media Awards. The power-couple received the Vanguard Award for their alliances with the LGBT+ community.
GLAAD is the biggest organisation committed to both promoting and monitoring fair representation of the LGBT+ community in the media. Every year they award LGBT+ people who have made a significant contribution to this, while also awarding allies who openly support the community through their career and activism. This year, the Vanguard Award went to Beyoncé and Jay-Z. Previous winners include Elizabeth Taylor, Cher, Antonio Banderas, Britney Spears, Jennifer Lopez and Janet Jackson.
Beyoncé received the award for her public support of the LGBT+ community and for including many people from the community in her career. Jay-Z was acknowledged for his music video for Smile, in which is mother came out as a lesbian.
In their acceptance speech, a clearly moved Beyoncé spoke about her gay uncle to whom she dedicated the award: ''Lastly, I want to dedicate this award to my uncle Johnny, the most fabulous gay man I have ever met, who helped raise me and my sister. He lived his truth. He was brave and unapologetic during a time when this country wasn’t as accepting. Witnessing his battle with HIV was one of the most painful experiences I’ve ever lived. I’m hopeful that his struggle served to open pathways for other young people to live more freely. LGBTQIA rights are human rights.''