On 4:44, JAY-Z told the story of finding out about his mother’s struggle to hide her sexuality on his track “Smile.” While Hov has admitted on the Rap Radar podcast that his mother, Gloria Carter, wasn’t OK with the song at first, both of them realized the message was too important not to share with the rest of the world.
At the 29th GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) Media Awards in Los Angeles on May 5, JAY was the recipient of a Special Recognition award for the song “Smile.” Ms. Carter accepted the award on Hov’s behalf and delivered a touching speech as well.
After ABC’s Good Morning America host Robin Roberts introduced her, Ms. Carter thanked several people and relived the moment she told her son about who she really is. She also explained why she wasn’t completely forthcoming with others and the moment it all changed — meeting her partner, Dania Diaz, who blew her an encouraging kiss mid-speech.
“Here I am. I’m loving. I’m respectful. I’m productive and I’m a human being who has a right to love who I love,” she said in closing. “So everybody — just smile, be free. Thank you and God bless.”
Watch the full acceptance speech below.