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Home » The “Gay Agenda”: LZ Granderson at TEDxGrandRapids (Transcript)

The “Gay Agenda”: LZ Granderson at TEDxGrandRapids (Transcript)

Full transcript of American journalist LZ Granderson’s TEDx Talk on The “Gay Agenda” at TEDxGrandRapids conference. “LZ” Granderson is an American journalist, a former actor, a contributor at ABC News and a columnist for ESPN.

Notable quote from the talk: 

When you hear the words “gay lifestyle” and “Gay Agenda” in the future, I encourage you to do two things. One: remember the US Constitution. And then, two: if you wouldn’t mind looking to your left, please. Look to your right. That person next to you is a brother, is a sister, and they should be treated with love and respect.


LZ Granderson – American Journalist & Actor

Hello! Oh, good. No one’s started drinking yet. Everyone’s feeling kind of perky and excited. Good, for I hope you’ll remember what we talk about, at least up to this point. After that, you’re on your own.

When I was about 16 years old, I can remember flipping through channels at home, during summer vacation, looking for a movie to watch on HBO.

And how many of you remember Ferris Bueller’s Day Off? Oh, yeah. Great movie, right?

Well, I saw Matthew Broderick on the screen, and so I thought, “Sweet! Ferris Bueller. I’ll watch this!” It wasn’t Ferris Bueller. And forgive me, Matthew Broderick. I know you’ve done other movies besides Ferris Bueller, but that’s how I remember you. You’re Ferris.

But you weren’t doing “Ferrisy” things at the time. You were doing gay things at the time. He was in a movie called Torch Song Trilogy.

And Torch Song Trilogy was based on a play about this drag queen, who essentially was looking for love. Love and respect. That’s what the whole film was about.

And, as I’m watching it, I’m realizing that they’re talking about me. Not the drag queen part. I’m not shaving my hair for anyone. But the gay part, the friendly love and respect, the part about trying to find your place in the world.

So, as I’m watching this, I see this powerful scene that brought me to tears, and it’s stuck with me for the past 25 years. And it’s this quote that the main character, Arnold, tells his mother, as they’re fighting about who he is and the life that he lives:

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