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Maren Morris ‘Felt a Little Badass’ Standing Up to Tucker Carlson During GLAAD Media Awards Speech

Unapologetically standing up for what’s right! Maren Morris was honored to be recognized at the 2023 GLAAD Media Awards — and couldn’t resist a subtle dig at her feud with Tucker Carlson.

“Fine, maybe I felt a little badass taking Tucker Carlson’s calling me a lunatic for standing up to transphobia, turning it into a tee-shirt and raising $150,000 for LGBTQ+ charities, yeah,” the “Bones” songstress, 33, quipped during the Saturday, May 13, awards ceremony. “That made me feel a little cool, but I don’t want to gloat. I would never insult the recently unemployed.”

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Morris had gotten into a heated social media feud with Brittany Aldean, the wife of country artist Jason Aldean, for her seemingly transphobic comments in August 2022.

“I’d really like to thank my parents for not changing my gender when I went through my tomboy phase. I love this girly life🤎✌🏼,” Brittany, 33, wrote via Instagram at the time, comparing her childhood “tomboy” behaviors to that of someone transitioning.

The blogger soon sparked backlash from the likes of Cassadee PopeQueer Eye’s Jonathan Van Ness and the “Tall Guys” singer.

Maren Morris 'Felt a Little Badass' Standing Up to Tucker Carlson During GLAAD Media Awards Speech
Maren Morris with an inset of Tucker Carlson. Gregory Pace/Shutterstock; The Photo Access/Cover Images

“It’s so easy to, like, not be a scumbag human? Sell your clip-ins and zip it, Insurrection Barbie,” Morris tweeted at the time, referring to the boutique owner’s blonde locks and the January 6 riot at the Capitol following the 2020 presidential election.

Brittany and the Texas native continued exchanging barbs on social media, while backing their own positions. After the YouTube personality — who has since launched a line of conservative merch representing her opinions — went on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight to address the drama, the broadcaster took her side. Carlson, 53, who was abruptly let go from the network in April, even identified Morris as a “lunatic country music person” instead of mentioning her name.

The “Middle” musician later reclaimed the dig, selling official merchandise with the words “Lunatic Country Music Person” emblazoned on it. She donated all proceeds to the Trans Lifeline and the GLAAD Transgender Media Program, raising more than $150,000 in less than one week.

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Morris’ frequent allyship for the LGBTQ+ community helped her earn the Excellence in Media Award at Saturday’s ceremony, which she attended alongside her husband, Ryan Hurd. The “My Crush” artist — who shares son Hayes, 3, with her spouse — is the first country music artist to receive the trophy.

“Standing here being honored by GLAAD this evening doesn’t feel quite real or deserving to me yet,” she tearfully said in her speech. “Coming from Arlington, Texas, to Nashville, Tennessee, 10 years ago, my only end goal at the time … was to make my songwriting dreams come true. I had no clue it would eventually lead me to such beautiful, inclusive heights like this one tonight.”

Maren Morris 'Felt a Little Badass' Standing Up to Tucker Carlson During GLAAD Media Awards Speech
Maren Morris Image Press Agency/NurPhoto/Shutterstock

She continued: “I first felt the acceptance of this community in my junior high school drama class. … During the school week, my queer friends were a safe space where I would go to theater class, and that entire period, we would laugh till our sides hurt, find our footing and freedom together completely unjudged. It was through their bold humor and compassion that I truly figured myself out in those formative years.”

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While Morris is proud of “proving my junior high naysayers wrong” who’d make fun of her for her singing, she is frequently motivated by the courage of her friends in the queer community.

“I have also heard countless times over the years that I’m one of the brave voices in country music. But that is not true. I’m not brave, stubborn to the point of delusional, yes, but not brave,” she added during the ceremony. “Making the right decision shouldn’t take bravery or courage. It shouldn’t take heroic efforts to want basic equal rights for everybody. I’m a straight, white woman, I’m fine but leaving your house knowing you could face violence just for being who you are, risking your life just by walking down the street that is bravery.”

She concluded: “I want my fellow country music artists, and artists in general, to understand that inclusivity is not only the right thing but it’s good for business. You open yourself up [and] your sound to a much larger audience even if you lose some along the way. The crowds at my shows are a sea of diversity from race, identity, to age, it is a loving safe space for my band, my crew, venue staff and most notably, my fans. This community stood up for me and made me feel safe when I felt alone, and I will never be able to repay you, but I hope I get to spend the rest of my life and career settling up.”

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