"I decided who I wanted to be, and that is who I am"- Gabrielle Chanel
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Paris Jackson is following in her godmother’s footsteps – she is now an ambassador for the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (E.T.A.F.), which the late actress founded in 1991 and which funds organizations worldwide that support comprehensive sexual-health education, HIV criminalization reform, and more.
On stage at Global Citizen Live! on Monday (September 19) in New York City, the 19-year-old model and actress stood with Xavier Bettle, the openly gay and married Prime Minister of Luxembourg, to publicly pledge her 100% support to fighting the AIDS pandemic. “Thirty years ago, almost to the day, our then-president Ronald Reagan would not speak about AIDS publicly while the pandemic was wreaking havoc within the gay community; he wouldn’t even say the word…AIDS,” Paris told the audience (via Vanity Fair). “Elizabeth Taylor was having none of that. She wasn’t going to let this crisis run wild as it directly impacted her friends & loved ones, those the administration considered discardable. Undaunted, she went to DC and spoke as loud as she could. From the Oval Office to testifying in front of Congress, Elizabeth would not be silenced. Her tireless efforts led to Ronald Reagan finally uttering the word AIDS publicly in 1987.” “Here we are decades later, living under a president who lost the popular vote and has proven himself to have the compassion and empathy of a dead flashlight battery,” Paris continued. “His budget proposes slashing healthcare funding for HIV/AIDS worldwide. So now, here I am hearing my Godmother’s voice, urging me to be heard and not allow all that’s been accomplished, in finding the cure, to fall by the wayside. But listen…I’ve got real news for him. None of us were discardable in 1987, and none of us are discardable now.” Paris was joined at the event by Annie Lennox, Game of Thrones star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Paul Shaffer, Michael Moore and rapper French Montana.
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