Ellen DeGeneres wants to be known for more than her dance moves.
On Thursday, the talk show host posted a video in which she declared: “I was the dancing lady for a little while and now I want to help educate my audience. I want to educate myself.”
In the clip, a somber DeGeneres announced that she stands with the protestors and wants to be “an ally fighting for change.”
“As a white person I don’t always know what to say,” she continued. “I think right now white people just have to sit in our discomfort and we have to admit there’s a lot we don’t know about black people’s lives and about a black person’s experience and there’s horrible injustice towards black people that has been ignored far far too long.”
The 62-year-old comedienne has been on the receiving end of a spate of bad publicity over the last few weeks. Staff from her popular daytime show complained about a lack of communication over salaries when the taped show was shuttered due to the coronavirus pandemic. She was criticized for comparing the lockdown to “being in jail” while she holed up in her $27 million Balinese-style mansion near Santa Barbara, Calif.
There was even a Twitter thread asking for stories about her being “one of the meanest people alive,” which quickly amassed over 2,000 replies.
And last week, DeGeneres posted a now-deleted tweet writing, “Like so many of you, I am angry and I am sad. People of color in this country have faced injustice for far too long. For things to change, things must change. We must commit ourselves to this change with conviction and love.”
People immediately criticized the term “people of color” and not using the word black.
One person tweeted: “Black people, Ellen. Now delete.”
DeGeneres then spoke to the show’s DJ, tWitch about supporting the Black Lives Movement and said, “I think a lot of people are being silent right now because everyone is scared they’re going to say the wrong thing.”