On today’s pre-taped “Ellen,” Williams performs “Runnin” from the “Hidden Figures” soundtrack. He was originally booked to perform a different song from the movie, and alongside gospel singer Kim Burrell. That was, until Burrell called homosexuals “perverted” in a recent speech at a Houston-area church.
“We have to talk about this before we go. You were supposed to do a different song. And you were supposed to perform it with a singer — I actually didn’t know her, her name is Kim Burrell,” Ellen began her final sit-down interview moments with Williams. “She made a statement — she was doing a Facebook Live — and she said some very not nice things about homosexuals, so I didn’t feel like that was good of me to have her on the show to give her a platform after she was saying things about me. So we’ll let you talk about it.”
“Well, there’s no space, there’s no room for any kind of prejudice in 2017 and moving on. There’s no room,” Pharrell replied. “She’s a fantastic singer, and I love her — just like I love everybody else — and we all got to get used to that. We got to get used to — we all have to get used to everyone’s differences and understand that this is a big, gigantic, beautiful, colorful world and it only works with inclusion and empathy. It only works that way.”
“Agreed. I think I say it all the time — to me when I say be kind to one another, I feel that,” DeGeneres stated. “As someone who has received a lot of hate and prejudice and discrimination because of who I choose to love, I just don’t understand anyone who has experienced that kind of oppression or anything like that — it only gives me more compassion. It gives me more empathy. I don’t ever want anyone to feel hurt because they are different.”
“Whenever you hear some sort of hate speech and you feel like it doesn’t necessarily pertain to you because you may not have anything to do with that, all you got to do is put the word ‘black’ in that sentence, or put ‘gay’ in that sentence, or put ‘transgender’ in that sentence or put ‘white’ in that sentence and all of the sudden it starts to make sense to you,” Williams concluded.
Watch their poignant discussion via the video above.
After her sermon of sorts, Burrell actually attempted to clear up her remarks on the Facebook Live feed that Ellen referenced. She did not apologize, however.
“I love you and God loves you but God hates the sin in you and me,” Burrell said. “I never said all gays were going to hell. I never said ‘LGBT’… I said ‘Sin.'”