Reneé Rapp Calls For a “Permanent” Ceasefire in Gaza Onstage at the GLAAD Media Awards

Reneé Rapp used her platform at the GLAAD Media Awards on Thursday night to call for an “immediate” and “permanent” ceasefire in Gaza.

“We’re in a room of very influential people, and very privileged people, which is exciting and also is a huge privilege to be a part of that,” the singer and Mean Girls star said during her acceptance speech for outstanding music artist. “Having said that, I’d like to take the opportunity to show support and call for an immediate ceasefire and permanent ceasefire in Gaza.”

As the crowd started to cheer for Rapp, she continued, “Please, continue to advocate for yourself, continue to advocate for your friends, for your queer friends and for those who can’t advocate for themselves.”

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Rapp’s remarks were especially poignant given the fact that GLAAD has come under fire for its silence on Palestine. While the LGBTQ+ advocacy organization issued a statement on October 16 expressing heartbreak for “the loss of civilian lives in Gaza and Israel,” it stopped short of calling for a ceasefire, and still has yet to do so. Activists, including the pro-Palestine group Queers for Liberation, have been pressuring American LGBTQ+ organizations to speak out for Palestine for months. In December, Queers for Liberation started a petition demanding that these organizations call for a permanent ceasefire. As of March 15, the petition has gathered over 28,000 signatures.

Several celebrities and cultural workers have shown their support for a ceasefire in Palestine in more subtle ways, such as the red “Artists for Ceasefire” pins sported by Billie Eilish and Boygenius on the red carpet. (Individual members of Boygenius have also attended rallies and voiced their support for Palestine on social media.) LGBTQ+ people working in the arts have been particularly passionate in their advocacy for Palestine, including Indya Moore, Cynthia Nixon, Sara Ramirez, and others.

But with awards season drawing to a close, very few celebrities have gone so far as to use their acceptance speech to call for a ceasefire, especially not celebrities like Rapp, who is still very much on the rise. At the Oscars this past Sunday, The Zone of Interest director Jonathan Glazer was the only award recipient to acknowledge Palestine in his speech, objecting to his Jewishness “being hijacked by an occupation which has led to conflict for so many innocent people.”

In December, hundreds of LGBTQ+ artists signed onto an open letter calling for a permanent ceasefire and pledging to boycott performing in Israel “until Palestinians are free.” The New York chapter of the AIDS activism grassroots organization ACT UP published a historic statement calling for a ceasefire and an end to the occupation in January, and called on other queer organizations to do the same.

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