On February 12, 2008, 15-year-old Lawrence “Larry” King was murdered by a fellow eight grader at his school in Oxnard, California. Larry was murdered because he had asked his murderer to be his Valentine. In this video, one of America’s most prominent lesbian woman, Ellen Degeneres, takes time on her popular daytime talk show to discuss the matter. Ellen, clearly very emotional, makes the statement that she and this boy are not second-class citizens, and that it is okay to be gay. She also calls attention to humor directed at gayness and how it creates the context that allowed for such a murder.
What do you see as the importance of Ellen discussing this topic on her daytime television show? Why do you think she took the time to discuss this issue?
Ellen argues that the tendency of homosexuals to be made fun of in media likely contributed to this tragic occurrence. Do you agree or disagree with this assertion? What might be done to change this state of affairs in the media?