Although the hosts and audience agreed with Davidson that we should treat those who disagree with us with dignity and respect Ben Summerskill, Chief Executive of Stonewall, said that when people compare homosexuals to paedophiles then it is right to label them as bigots.
The controversial award was given to Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the Roman Catholic Cardinal from Scotland who has regularly spoken out against homosexuality, and publically claims that equal marriage will shame the United Kingdom and degrade British society.
Other winners at the star studded ceremony at the Victoria and Albert Museum included ITV hit show Britain’s Got Talent for Broadcast of the Year and the East London Out Project, who received £5,000 from the Inclusive Foundation to continue their work.
The biggest cheer for the night went to Sue Perkins who received the Entertainer of the Year award, who dedicated the award to her long-term comedy partner Mel Giedroyc.
Ben Summerskill said: “‘As ever, I’m humbled by the dedication with which this year’s Award winners have been advancing equality for millions of people. Their efforts have never been more valuable and we will never be deterred from celebrating their contribution – or from highlighting the bigotry and malice expressed by some public figures towards gay people in this country.’
The full list of winners:
Hero of the Year (supported by PwC) – Reverend Giles Fraser
Broadcast of the Year (supported by London Women’s Clinic) – Britain’s Got Talent
Entertainer of the Year – Sue Perkins
Journalist of the Year – Hugo Rifkind (The Times) and Owen Jones (The Independent)
Politician of the Year – Ruth Davidson MSP
Publication of the Year – GayStarNews.com
Sports Award of the Year – Rugby Football League
Writer of the Year – Jeanette Winterson (Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?)
Community Group of the Year (supported by Square Peg Media and the Inclusive Foundation) – East London Out Project
Bigot of the Year – Cardinal Keith O’Brien