Over 10,000 people #StandUpForEllen, thank J.C. Penney for making the right choice

Yesterday, GLAAD called on advocates and allies to stand up for one of America’s favorite talk-show host, Ellen DeGeneres, after the anti-gay group "One Million Moms.com, a project of the American Family Association” – an organization designated as a “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) – told its supporters to call J.C. Penney and demand that she be fired as their new spokesperson because she’s gay.

But Americans do not think that Ellen – or anyone - should be fired for being gay.

In an overwhelming display of support, over 96% of LA Times readers polled agree that Ellen should not only maintain her post as J.C. Penney’s spokesperson, but call Ellen “a symbol of equality.”

Blogs including Joe My God, Think Progress, Lez Get Real and Towleroad first broke the news and now, close to 10,000 people have leant their support by contacting J.C. Penney and letting the retailer know it made the right choice. To join the action and #StandUpForEllen, click here.

Sadly, the reality of the matter is that even today an individual can be fired in 29 states because of their sexual orientation, and in 34 states because of their gender identity. Texas – where J.C. Penney is headquartered, for instance – does not offer LGBT employees any workplace protections (J.C. Penney itself offers protections based on sexual orientation).

"Since Ellen came out 15 years ago, the nation has evolved and support for LGBT people is at an all-time high,” noted Herndon Graddick, GLAAD’s Senior Director of Programs and Communications. “Although it is still legal to fire someone for being gay in 29 states, Americans are fair-minded people who know that firing someone just for being gay is not what this country is about. J.C. Penney is standing with Ellen and so do we."

Jeremy Hooper of Good As You notes that "One Million Moms" has a long history of working to strip LGBT people of vital protections, including actions against Johnson & Johnson after the company extended domestic partner benefits to LGBT employees and Cracker Barrel after the chain added workplace protections for gay and lesbian employees.

GLAAD thanks all of those who have already taken a stand for Ellen, and encourages you to share the action page www.glaad.org/standupforellen on Facebook and Twitter. Together, we are sending an important message that no one should be ridiculed, much less fired, simply for being who they are.


States where individuals can be fired for being gay:

Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
Florida
Georgia
Idaho
Indiana
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Michigan
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
North Carolina
North Dakota
Oklahoma
Ohio
Pennsylvania
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Virginia
West Virginia
Wyoming

States where individuals can be fired for being transgender:
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Idaho
Indiana
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maryland
Michigan
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
New Hampshire
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Oklahoma
Ohio
Pennsylvania
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Virginia
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming

If you haven't already, please take action at www.glaad.org/standupforellen

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