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Billy Porter is rarely one to hold his tongue – and he had some choice words at Thursday night for the Supreme Court and for Donald Trump–sympathizing Republicans: “F— SCOTUS” and “F— y’all, too!”
The “Pose” Emmy winner was onstage at Outfest’s opening night to accept the LGBTQ film and TV festival’s coveted Achievement Award when he was apparently inspired to share his thoughts on the last month’s news cycle.
While his impassioned “F— SCOTUS!” is rather self-explanatory, given the Court’s recent conservative rulings on gun control, women’s access to abortion, climate change and more, the multi-hyphenate entertainer then zeroed in on the Jan. 6 Congressional committee hearings.
Condemning Republicans who have testified against former president Donald Trump during those hearings, he indicated he sees them for who they are: “None of you Republicans who are coming forward in these hearings right now are heroes,” Porter claimed. “You agreed with everything he [Trump] did until Jan. 6, until his cult followers came for y’all. You are not heroes. F— y’all, too!”
The sentiment was met with cheers, applause and a stray “Preach!” from the Orpheum Theatre audience in downtown Los Angeles.
Porter also encouraged that those who supported the Democratic party not become complacent during this time, even placing some blame on them for not being more aggressive when they were needed most.
“Our messaging has to change,” he said. “We thought we won something, the Democrats, the progressives. We got civil rights, we got Roe v. Wade, we got marriage equality, we got all the rest. We got a Black president. And then we all sat on our a–es and ate bonbons for eight years. And then the unthinkable happened. We’re a part of it, too. Frederick Douglass said, ‘Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.’ We lost our vigilance. It’s time to get that sh– back.”
He continued: “Our 24-hour news cycle has forgotten to illuminate that the reason the pushback is so severe in this moment is because the change has already happened. We’re already here. Look at me! Look at this movie! Look at ya’ll!” he said, nodding this his directorial debut, “Anything’s Possible,” which premiered at Outfest as the festival opener. “A celebration of trans joy centered on a Black, empowered, transgender high school senior who has the cutest Arab Muslim boyfriend and has the audacity to demand respect for her humanity.”
“The change is already happening and we ain’t going back,” he added. “We are at war to save the soul of humanity. Thoughts and prayers don’t mean shit. They don’t. Hate is an action. Love is an action. Peace is an action. So we have to choose love. We have to choose hope. We have to choose joy.”