Kathy Grif­fin to the res­cue

Ac­tivism in Trump's Amer­ica and... a po­ten­tial new re­al­ity show?!

GA Voice - - Front Page - By CHRIS AZZOPARDI

Of course Kathy Grif­fin’s man­ager asks if our con­ver­sa­tion is be­ing recorded – have you heard her talk? Luck­ily, the celeb-skew­er­ing, gaylov­ing, Trump-hat­ing comedienne’s fil­ter­less mouth moves at a me­te­oric pace, which is good news for any­one who wants to know her thoughts on the prac­ti­cal­ity of celebrity ac­tivism, her idea for a “My Life on the D-List” spinoff and watch­ing “Feud” with the gay mafia.

I caught up with Grif­fin, who dis­cussed all the above just days after be­ing hon­ored with the Van­guard Award by the San Fran­cisco Gay Men’s Cho­rus on March 12 for her ar­dent and un­wa­ver­ing role as an ally in the LGBT rights move­ment. She shared her in­sight into what the hell we do – and what she’s do­ing – now that Don­ald Trump is run­ning this coun­try.

What does it mean to you to be an ac­tivist and a celebrity with the kind of plat­form you have in the Trump era?

I think peo­ple that be­lieve in any kind of nu­anced thought, who can han­dle a thought, know that, yeah, a celebrity can ac­tu­ally pro­vide a real ser­vice for a cause. Celebri­ties sort of apol­o­gize all the time, but we’re vot­ing cit­i­zens like any­body else. I de­fend my right to speak

about things as a celebrity or as an of­fen­sive comic or what­ever you wanna call me. I’ve toured this coun­try so many times, and I’ve also per­formed in Iraq and Afghanistan for the troops. I’ve per­formed in a prison. I’ve per­formed at the Wal­ter Reed Army Med­i­cal Cen­ter. So, I kind of feel that’s what I bring to the ta­ble – that I’m re­ally, re­ally proud of.

Ev­ery city has a dif­fer­ent vibe. I can kind of tell in the first few min­utes of the show what they’re gonna be into. But some au­di­ences re­ally want to hear a lot of Trump ma­te­rial, some wanna hear a lot about my mom, some wanna hear a lot about, you know, my new neigh­bors Kim Kar­dashian and Kanye West [laughs], which is hi­lar­i­ous to all par­ties. My ma­te­rial is def­i­nitely new, so if you’ve seen me five months ago, five years ago or 10 years ago, you’re def­i­nitely gonna see a new show. And even though I’m sup­port­ing the book, I’m not, like, just sit­ting there read­ing from the book. I’m do­ing all dif­fer­ent stuff.

Some­times in my shows I’ll ac­tu­ally talk about the kind of ac­tivism that I’m up to, and I’ll try to make it funny. Like, I had a one­day show in Mex­ico, where, by the way, I spent the whole day apol­o­giz­ing to the whole coun­try; I just walked around stage say­ing, “Lo siento [for] Señor Cheeto.” But I bought a bunch of Mex­i­can post­cards and those, for ex­am­ple, are fun to mail to leg­is­la­tors that are maybe not help­ing the LGBT agenda. You can march, you can call, you can send let­ters, send post­cards.

Do you think it’s time “D-List” makes a come­back?

Well, I sort of would love to do some­thing sim­i­lar. I mean, the chal­lenge is, would any­one re­ally let me do a re­al­ity show? Be­cause “D-List” re­ally was un­scripted, and now they’re all scripted and you can see them read­ing a teleprompter in the in­ter­views and stuff. I’d love to do, like, “D-List to Leg­end,” where I’m try­ing to be­come a leg­end and I’m try­ing to sur­round my­self with, I don’t know, Sid­ney Poitier, Mick Jag­ger and Cher. Like, all right, maybe I’m not A-list, maybe I’m B, but it’s time for me to be­come a leg­end. I think there could be some com­edy there. If no­body wants to do it, I’ll just have to be a liv­ing leg­end in my mind and rock my 50city tour and my best­seller, which An­der­son Cooper told me he just read his sec­tion and then closed it.

Who do you plan on invit­ing to your “Fire Is­land” view­ing party?

Well, first of all, the gay mafia is real. I’m a prod­uct of it and it ex­ists. So, ac­tu­ally, on the Twit­ter, I just got a tweet from Jai Ro­driguez, the orig­i­nal “Queer Eye,” say­ing “over­due for a Kathy Grif­fin mafia night at her house,” so it’ll be Jai Ro­driguez, Chris Colfer from “Glee,” Lance Bass and their plus-ones, and they’ll all come over to my new house and we’ll sit in my fab­u­lous screening room – and then we’ll watch “Feud.” But that’s just a typ­i­cal night for me.

“Feud” is so your show. You must be eat­ing that up.

Oh yeah. I’m eat­ing it up al­most as much as Jes­sica [Lange] and Su­san [Saran­don] are eat­ing up the scenery. Ac­tu­ally, we all have in­di­ges­tion from how much eat­ing of the scenery we’re all do­ing.

Ha, I be­lieve it! Well, great to talk to you again, Kathy. Thanks for your time and for be­ing on the front­lines of the gay move­ment.

I feel we’re all kind of reen­er­gized. Our work is not done. But I couldn’t feel like I was in bet­ter hands with the LGBT com­mu­nity. I al­ways say this com­mu­nity knows how to lit­i­gate and get shit done and get mov­ing and gal­va­nized and get to­gether when the rub­ber hits the road, and the rub­ber has hit the road, my friend. So, I’ll see you at the next act of re­sis­tance… or we’ll be shar­ing a jail cell. One or the other.

With a TV to watch “Feud.”

[Laughs] That’s all I ask.

Kathy Grif­fin is on tour now pro­mot­ing her lat­est book, “Celebrity Run-Ins.” (Pho­tos cour­tesy Kathy Grif­fin)

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