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Ellen DeGeneres’ mom: People against gay marriage are bullies

Betty DeGeneres may be 82, but as the mother of one of the most famous lesbians is still campaigning for gay rights across the world
Betty DeGeneres, 82, has revealed how Ellen came out to her and what she thinks of people against gay marriage.

She may be 82 years old, but Betty DeGeneres is a gay rights campaigner who can be extremely outspoken.

Speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald, the mother of Ellen has called people who are against gay marriage bullies.

She said politicians who fail to support marriage equality are just ‘bullying’, and said she would love to get a message to Prime Minister Julia Gillard, who is against same-sex marriage.

‘A lot of people are gonna find out they were on the wrong side of history. Marriage equality will be OK,’ DeGeneres said.

'It's like the Civil Rights movement in the US. Years ago our situation was awful. You couldn't have marriage between two different races. Ridiculous! Today it's such past history.

‘Your leaders should pay attention to what's really happening and get with it. All bullying is bad.

‘My friend, a retired English teacher, 92, said to me: “Ellen was bullied.” I thought quickly back to her school days. She didn't come out til after high school and she wasn't bullied at school.

‘But my friend said when Ellen came out on her sitcom and all the advertizers pulled out and she lost her show, that was bullying. By the ones who had more power.’

While her daughter films her TV show in Australia, DeGeneres has spent her time addressing a meeting of PFLAG, a group for parents, friends and families of lesbian and gay children.

Talking about how her daughter came out to her as a lesbian, DeGeneres said: ‘We were walking on the beach together at my sister's house in Mississippi, just an hour from New Orleans.

‘Ellen stopped and I turned round. She was crying and I said what's wrong? She said: “Mum, I'm gay.” She was crying because she didn't know how I'd take it.

‘I hugged her and all these thoughts immediately ran through my mind, you know, my girl-next-door daughter will suddenly be an object of bigotry. It was all I could think about. That wasn't OK with me.’

She added: ‘When Ellen came out she wrote me a letter. I'd remarried and was living in a different city, she'd gone back to live in New Orleans right after high school.

‘She wrote that she didn't expect me to ever understand. Well, I think I understand. I think I got past that. The more I met all her friends, I liked them and, you know, there was just really no difference.’

Check out Betty DeGeneres on Ellen's daytime talk show here:

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