Wanda Sykes Makes Awkward Gay Marriage Appeal at NAACP Annual Convention

28 Jul

By JasmineHughes

Gay rights are an awkward topic for the NAACP.   An appearance by Comedian Wanda Sykes may have made some attendees uneasy at a panel discussion in Downtown L.A.

Sykes opened up her Monday appearance at the NAACP annual convention by saying “I didn’t have to ‘come out’ black.”

This is not the first time the comedienne has joked about the trials and tribulations that come along with being of a different sexual orientation than most. The aforementioned remark has probably received chuckles from many audiences, but this was a convention at which many people have ties to African-American churches that don’t recognize same-sex marriage.

Sykes, who legally married her partner before Californians passed Proposition 8, is considered a hero to gays and lesbians, and her audiences are usually friendly. But at the NAACP convention, there were no guarantees. Right next door was a luncheon that consisted of religious leaders whose churches largely oppose same-sex marriage.

And just across the convention hall, two Los Angeles church pastors stood firm.

“Our denomination doesn’t allow clergy to participate in marrying same-sex couples,” said Reverend Henry Masters of Holman United Methodist Church.

“At our church, we believe that marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman,” said the Rev. Harlan Jones, of Phillips Temple CME Church.

If nothing else, the mere occurrence of Monday’s panel showed a willingness to talk about an issue that once stayed firmly under the rug. But there were still a lot of empty seats.

About jasminesnroses

Hello World. I’m a recent graduate of Rutgers University, trying to make my mark. I have many interests, curiosities and ideas. All of which can be found here. So stick around =)


40 Responses to “Wanda Sykes Makes Awkward Gay Marriage Appeal at NAACP Annual Convention”

  1. Esther Muhammad July 28, 2011 at 9:58 pm #

    I think that one should not impose their sexual preferences, the NAACP was not the place for that comment. i think all this gay/lesbian has gone way to far. who cares about what a person does in their private moments that should remain private whether homosexual or not let bring decency back to this country if this country was ever decent to begin with.

    • brainsmasher July 28, 2011 at 11:12 pm #

      What was Wanda Sykes doing there in the first place? Homosexuals have never been persecuted in the black community? We have one main problem and we should not allow our attention to be directed at solving somebody else’s problems. Focus.

      Wanda Sykes and Queen Latifah go off and do your thang and stop trying to influence other black people to live your lifestyle.

      • val August 3, 2011 at 1:55 am #

        Who’s influencing you? At all the awards shows people say whatever they feel and its talked about for 1 minute and dropped. So get over it, you can never be what you are not, and no one complains about being straight, but they do complain about being oppressed.

      • Pete Pehouse August 9, 2011 at 11:35 am #

        They should pool their monies and live on an Island some damn where and bull-dyke until disease overtakes them.

    • Straight Talk July 29, 2011 at 5:08 am #

      Sister Muhammad….you said a mouthful. Just what I was thinking. This whole world has gone mad with all this homosexual stuff. Keep your personal business to yourself….and for the record, it is not natural. God made one man and one woman to populate with world. I understand about the love part. But I firmly believe that its the making love that makes it so yeek! And what I hate most about it, is that they are shoveing it down the thoats of everyone else. Your sexual preference should be kept to yourself….go back in the closet and stay there! And please stop relateing it to racism!

      • val August 3, 2011 at 1:59 am #

        Gay folks are only asking to stop being hated, just like white’s hated blacks. Let’s stop hating period, however you may feel about it. Stop hating and blaming it on God.

  2. Alvin Marks Jr. July 28, 2011 at 11:58 pm #

    Ya’ll Black folks are a trip… we all have family members who are gay. There many gay men in the Black church and ya’ll know it. So stop acting as if you don’t have a loved one who is gay. To my knowledge, I have at least 3-4 cousins who are gay and possibly a half brother who may be on the DL. Please let it go and move on…

    • Straight Talk July 29, 2011 at 5:18 am #

      Yeah, we all have family members who are homosexual. But that don’t make it right. What they do and who they do is suppose to be their business. My problem is when they want to change laws to make others agree with their life style. And just because they family don’t make it right. I don’t run around boasting my sexual preference….why should they. And for the record, my brother lives with a man (like a man lives with a woman). Also, it seems like its the homosexuals that won’t let it go and move on. It is what it is….but be quiet about! I mean really, as if same sex couples could ever really be married.

    • tram July 31, 2011 at 5:09 pm #


  3. ron July 29, 2011 at 12:44 am #

    Yes that’s correct…
    And you didn’t have to come out of a closest to tell anybody you were female- -either. You were born a black female child. It wasn’t till you got grown and divorced from your heterosexual relationship that you decided you were gay. To bad we can’t (after we get grown and rich), come out a diffrent color, or height just because feel freedom to do what ever we feel.

    • NubianPride July 29, 2011 at 12:02 pm #

      So….. when did you “decide” you were straight?

  4. gailjapan July 29, 2011 at 8:22 am #

    It’s good to see that Homophobia is still alive and well in the Black community…every pregnant woman flaunts her sexuality. People openly discuss their husbands and wives at work, at church, in the grocery store. Using the logic that one should not display their sexuality is just plain ignorant at the very least and mean-spirited in the worst way.

    • NubianPride July 29, 2011 at 12:00 pm #

      Gaijapan, my sentiments exactly!
      As a black male, I am utterly sick and tired of the arguments used by many heterosexuals for as their “reasoning” to continue to oppress homosexuals to live freely and coexist in peace with heterosexuals.
      Many of the comments here and abroad resonate one central message:
      The heterosexual Black community as a whole will “tolerate” (and I use that term loosely) homosexuals as long as abide by THEIR rules and live according to THER comfort level. This co existence of “live by my terms only” mentality is exactly what keeps the Black community at large unable to move forward with this issue and progress healthy as a united, loving community.

      • MrUnapologetic July 29, 2011 at 2:38 pm #

        I wholeheartedly agree with you, Nubianpride. What really needs to be said is that GAY PEOPLE AREN’T GOING ANYWHERE no time soon. We’re just as much apart of the human fabric as anyone else. All this hateful talk is just that… HATE! And contrary to the opinion of many (i.e., pastors, bishops, politicians, etc.) GOD has nothing to do with it! Nothing!

      • Eric Wright July 31, 2011 at 6:49 pm #

        Call it homophobia or call it whatever you want. In the grand scheme of things homosexuality is a value system championed by Europeans alone. To compare the oppression of African Americans with whatever label you want to use to characterize the gay experience is utter psychosis. If you make such a comparison, you are guilty of having this delusional unhistorical view of the America especially as it pertains to black history. If African Americans as a collective have decided that they are not going to adopt this foreign value on gay marriage, that’s our right to do so. And I’m not even referencing the Bible or the Koran or the Torah. For me its just sick!!! Plain and simple. And I will not give my off spring the ideal that this is sensible alternative to male and female relationships. Most people of color throughout the world feel the same way, and its only in European countries or countries dominated by Europeans that this life style gets any validity. Furthermore, if you haven’t paid attention, this topic is all to easy to use when Europeans want to thwart their responsibility for white supremacy often citing well “your community is homophobic.” To the delusional minds this offers even more confusion and keeps the true issues of African American from ever getting addressed. I’m not for violence against or any other maligning of those who live this lifestyle. But I don’t have to accept it, champion it, or get behind any legislative accommodation for it because frankly I don’t believe in it. If Wanda Sykes wants to have an interracial gay marriage with her European women, more power to her. The NAACP convention is not the venue for her promotion of this agenda, African American s have way bigger fish to fry… But hey if the NACCP invited her then that’s on them.

      • swilli62 August 1, 2011 at 1:50 pm #

        What are you talking about? There are many issues that divide the black community and homosexuality wouldn’t even be in the top ten. I don’t like this propaganda of comparing homosexual acceptance to the AFRICAN AMERICAN slave struggle or any other type of prejudicial struggles we’ve had while living in America. It’s an insult.

  5. pudd July 30, 2011 at 6:52 am #

    God is angry with the wicked every day! You are HATED! GOD HATES YOU and I HATE YOU! AIDS did get rid of a lot of you so don’t get too gay pride on yourself. There is plenty down the pike to eliminate you and your perverse presence. You could have found a better way to deal with your overwhelming fears SICKOS.

    • Prof K July 30, 2011 at 3:17 pm #

      Beautiful Christian sentiments. Is this what your faith taught you? To hate? I suspect God will be angry with you my dear, for such bigotry and evil intentions. I cast the devil out of you!.

      As for keeping gays quiet…all you black folk need to remember when whites wanted you all to keep quiet. You all wanted to be heard, to fight for your rights to live as humans. No difference with gay people. And until people accept that being gay is just like being black, you’ll hear us call you out every time.

      • swilli62 August 1, 2011 at 2:02 pm #

        WHAT!!!! Being GAY IS A CHOICE!!! BEING BLACK IS PERMANENT!!! Please, don’t ever compare Being Gay to Being BLACK! THIS analogy doesn’t even compute nor makes sense! There is no comparison. So, I guess the struggles/prejudices you’ve lived with because you turned your hair blonde (and blondes are discriminated against too), is comparable to the struggles of the JEWS IN THE HOLOCAUST!!!

        This is the same analogy your trying to use when you say that the problems associated with being GAY is comparable to the HISTORICAL STRUGGLES AND MURDERS OF AFRICAN AMERICANS!

        Your out of your mind!

    • Uncle Kipper July 31, 2011 at 6:22 pm #

      1 John 4:8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love!

  6. Blkpanther July 30, 2011 at 9:21 am #

    Wanda Sykes is no role model..She’s gay and married to a white woman raising black children, how more confused can you be or make your children? These people are trying to make gay/lesbian lifestyle acceptable in the black community, the last hold out against this degenerate lifestyle..

  7. Richard Packard July 31, 2011 at 5:09 pm #

    God hates SIN not people! Fornication, lying, stealing, murdering, covetousness, disrespecting father and mother and homosexuality IS A SIN. This is what “my faith” has taught me, but it has also taught me to love my erring brothers and sisters and believe me, there is enough erring brothers and sisters on both sides of the aisle. I personally don’t condone the homosexual lifestyle, but I also don’t condone fornication, lying, infidelity, murdering and an array of other “character flaws” that we all possess. The problem appears to be one of “acceptance” more than anything else, black folk have been trying to be accepted by the majority population since their emancipation from slavery. They (black folk) had nothing to do with themselves being born black, it was not a decision they themselves made, but with homosexuality, you make a choice eventhough I have heard of the argument, “I was born this way”. There are men who have the propensity to be attracted to children, as overwhelming as the “desire” might be, their “choice” to act upon that urge is all that matters. Through diligent self-control, counseling, prayer, and any other method to control those desires anyone can overcome their desires for the abnormal. I don’t want to seem insensitive to those who are going through these trials (no matter what it might be), but life isn’t a ‘bed or roses’ and we all must work diligently to be decent, moral, upright, honest and in self-control. This issue is a complicated issue because of the amount of “emotional fervor” involved in its discussion, God has given us intelligence and emotions, we have to “apply” one of these virtues at the appropriate time and not confuse the discussions between “hate, homophobia or anything else. As much as the homosexual community would like the majority population to “accept” their lifestyle, it IS NOT NORMAL! The fact that they (the homosexual person) was not born from “same-sex” relationship is a testimony of the abnormality of this union. To “distort” the original intention of the institution of marriage (procreate between one man and one woman) for the “acceptance” of the homosexual lifestyle is disingenuous on the part of the homosexual community. Let us all be honest with one another and let us accept the fact that homosexuality has been around since the ‘dawn of man’, but the participants will have to answer to a ‘higher calling’ like ourselves who “discriminate” against them.

    • R August 2, 2011 at 7:54 pm #

      VERY Well Said.

    • Jean August 2, 2011 at 10:59 pm #

      With all due respect, sir, you know not of which you speak. You are no authority on the subject of homosexuality.

      Please be advised and note that all of us are God’s children; further, some people are indeed born homosexual. I know firsthand of which I speak. This is not some fodder of which I inform you to go deeper in your study to know whether or not “some” homosexuals are born that way. I have witnessed this when no one around was a model from which this little boy of whom I speak could mold himself to become what he is. He played dress up with his sister and no one thought nothing of it! But, I know my God loves us all!

  8. Tajee July 31, 2011 at 5:43 pm #

    People are so quick to say gays are this and gays are that, I wanna know if you needed a heart transplant like asap would u not take it if the surgen way gay? People are quick to say your not born gay and a lot of people aren’t but who’s to say the ones that are isn’t. Some people can’t help being straight and some cant help being gay. I believe if Eddie Long and who ever else would’ve been honest with themselves and to others, he may not have had a problem, but when you live a lie thats the worst thing you can do to yourself and your family.

    • swilli62 August 1, 2011 at 2:07 pm #

      If a GAY person were my surgeon, and if it were an emergency, of course I would, anybody would? So, what is your point here!

      • Aunt Delta DAwn August 2, 2011 at 5:13 am #

        I do not believe anyone would. Remember the countless stories of whites rejecting medical treatment from a black doctor. Some men will not allow a homosexual to touch them.

  9. val July 31, 2011 at 8:11 pm #

    Everyone is talking gay this and that, the bedroom has nothing to do with being gay. Gays and straights all sleep with whomever they like and no one says a peep about it, but if you spend 15, 20 or 30 years with a person, and you share everything just like most of us do in marriage, why deny that couple the Social Security of the other person, the visitation and right to make decisions in sickness and in death for the person that you spent most of your life with. The decision to continue to raise your partners children (whom they are already comfortable with), the right to the house that they both paid for. In America, the only standard we have for those things to be feasible are marriage. So think about it in those terms, and I know you would want the same rights for gay couples.

    • Dee August 1, 2011 at 1:46 am #

      If you live in the world then expect to have worldly values, I am not judging any of you YAWHEW does that. Romans speaks of this filthy habit of man laying with man and woman with woman. I speak of you all trying to push it down peoples throats, trying to get laws enacted to make us hold in our opinions of this vile act. Trying to make us accept it. Like I said worldly Please read it in the book of Roman 1:20-32.

      • val August 1, 2011 at 3:53 am #

        No one is asking you to accept it, according to the word many things are vile and filthy habits. Think what you will about filthy habits, but two people that happen to fall in love have to deal with the Creator themselves, you will not be there to reap what they have sown. So since no one has committed a crime, let them have the same rights and freedom as the other people who have not created a crime. You are correct YAWHEW does that, it is not for you to judge or interpret the Bible for them. Live and let live, everyone will have their judgement day, and not by you..

      • swilli62 August 1, 2011 at 2:10 pm #

        If you look at the WESTERN HISTORY of the Roman Empire, you will see that they loved Homosexuality, Bestiality, and Pedophilia. This perversion has been part of the European World for a long time.

  10. john brown August 1, 2011 at 9:19 pm #

    missing the point, i would not go to church to convert people to use drugs…therefore she should not go to the naacp talking about her gay lifestyle. there is a time a place for everything. nothing wrong with being an advocate for gay rights, but do it in the right setting…not in a place to merely for shock value and to draw attention.

  11. sukumu August 2, 2011 at 3:12 am #

    I’am the father of five, black and 71 yrs old a life long civil and human right activist. Many of you sound like the southern bigots who fought us every step of the way, one common theme theirs and yours they are trying to change our way of life just for wanting the freedom to live as free humam being in this country How do people being gay by choice or chance effect your way of life? If you don’t want to marry or be around gays don,t. About blacks gays and civil rights its all the same opression is opression. Some one argued that homosexel was a european concept, how did african asian an other get it, I’ve travel all over africa I saw gays every where I went, the same in asia and the so.pacific. There is the bible and other holy books that says that god made us for producing children what about pople born infirtle was god asleep when they were born some with two sex organ humans are born blind some with authism and born with mental illness but you know, that no mistake was made when it comes to sexuallity.

    • Aunt Delta DAwn August 2, 2011 at 5:35 am #

      How does people being gay by choice affect our way of life. I feel the need to comment on this phrase. If one is a heterosexual and is accosted by a gay person, that affects the way of life. I children are coerced such as the lads in the Eddie Long scenario, that affects their lives forever especially since he indoctrinated them into a homosexual world and now they will have to live with the excruciating pain the rest of their lives. No amount of money can eradicate their pain, them being torn in an unnatural place not having a chance to at least be straight. Clearly it affects all our live as we are blogging, tweeting, FaceBooking, Tweeting about it. I am not God, I have no heaven or hell to place people in. I am not in favor of homosexuality but I am not in favor of brutality against homosexuals for their sexual preference be the belief they were born that way or made that way. I would not want a homosexual male to teach my young male child. Young children are impressionable and often times take on the traits of those that they have constant exposure to. My comment is also shaped by an awful experience when I resided in Europe. A teacher and a twelve year old boy of a single parent (the easiest prey for those that like boys) is the example. The teacher assumed the role as big brother/uncle if you will. The mother trusted this man to what she believed he was grooming her child to be a man in the absence of his own father. Her son kept getting sick, the doctors could not pin point it. Finally they determined the child has Aids. A twelve year old with Aids, they traced it back to the teacher, he had been molesting and threatening this child the entire time he was suppose to be mentoring and caring for him. So yes I am shaped by this. I NEVER want a homosexual teaching my young male child, nephew, cousin, friend etc… I am not against homosexuals at all as I have a gay relative, but I have a line of demarcation and it does affect our lives when our young ones do not get a chance to grow up straight, when all they know is a homosexual act from an early molestation. Yes, we “ALL” sin and fall short to a defiled life, thus the reason Christ gave up his life for us. We are all tempted, struggle with sin challenges in our sinful nature, but we cannot continuously act against the word of God and then try to dress it up as right. If we fall short, when we are wrong and we have to admit it, then admit it, take the consequences and be free. We have gone crazy in this society with our blind acceptance of sin as being right. Now I fully understand the gated to heaven being narrow and those to hell wide. I now get it. I just regret it took me so long with so much pain, nevertheless I got it now and prayerfully those of us acting in sin, will get it and strive for righteous living IAW the word of God

      • R August 2, 2011 at 8:03 pm #

        It’s not that we or maybe some dislike or love the person any less for being gay, etc, it’s the behavior. Because like you said you can repent and be forgiven and the sin will be forgotten by the Father. But we CANNOT KEEP calling sin something other than SIN. IT IS WHAT IT IS.

    • Eric Wright August 3, 2011 at 10:18 pm #

      With all due respect, my eldest brother, oppression is not oppression. That is not a view that is either scientific or even favorable to solving African American issues. Gays have a higher socioeconomic level, haven’t gone through a system of fierce exploitation and oppression (i.e. Slavery,), have not experienced systematic genocide, have not been purposely under educated, have way more control of their public image, and so many more collective benefits that are not the same for African Americans. So to attempt to equate our struggle to whatever you want to describe their experience as is just nonsense. And by comparing these situations you further suggest that there is some type of universal solution–which once again African Americans loose out greatly using that thought process. It’s almost like your simplifying our situation as to avoid offending another group of people who make these false assertions without knowing the oppression that African Americans face. Furthermore, I traveled Africa as well and I didn’t see any openly gay individuals. This is not to suggest that they don’t exist, but it is not a lifestyle that the communities embrace–that much is certain. But despite my personal beliefs, please understand that African Americans are always entertaining someone else’s interest. As a matter of fact, this issue alone is garnering too much attention while our core issues remain virtually unaddressed. By the way, I went to the Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transvestite Expo website, and I don’t remember seeing anything on their agenda discussing white supremacy, the mass incarceration of blacks, police brutality, unequal education or anything pertaining to our struggle (http://www.originalglbtexpo.com/). Hmm…

  12. bmarcushook August 2, 2011 at 1:31 pm #

    The Most High GOD changes Hearts & Minds. Our job is not to judge them & pray for them. Do people really think no gay people on naacp you’ re. The new testament states Jesus died for “All” sins

  13. Someone who wants to stop the violence. January 8, 2012 at 11:59 pm #

    Ask yourself what you are worried about if same-sex marriage is legalized. Whatever your answer is, ask yourself if you really believe what you just came up with. Homosexuality is not going to spread. It is not communicable. Society is not going to turn into a Lady Gaga video. Most gay couples I know are just as boring as you and I. They sit on the couch and watch television. They work at the post office, the hospital, the grocery store, and at real estate agencies, just like heterosexuals do. They eat out at restaurants and shop at Target. Many have pot bellies and don’t have much fashion sense, just like me. They own pets, and go to church. They volunteer, sing Christmas carols, and buy Girl Scout cookies. What are you afraid of? What is going to change by allowing these people to commit to one another and enjoy the benefits that you and I enjoy: tax breaks, insurance breaks, bereavement leave, medical leave to care for a sick partner, domestic violence protection, visitation of partner in the hospital, burial determination, medical decisions on behalf of partner. Really sexy stuff. You and I take these things for granted. Nobody wants to go through life not knowing how they will deal with some of these difficult moments in life. Imagine if you were denied any of the above rights when the time came for you and your spouse to exercise that right? I’ll tell you what it would feel like. It would feel like you were a second-class citizen.

    This is a quote from a heterosexual, married, North Carolinian father of three who cares about LGBT equality. I wholeheartedly agree, as a pansexual, Pagan, Black young woman, and if you think being gay is a choice, is wrong, is a sin, should be kept in the closet, then please, look at your life, look at your choices. Heterosexuals are allowed so many rights and freedoms. All we’re asking for is equality.

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