6:07 AM AKST, February 9, 2012
LOS ANGELES (KTLA) -- The traditional values organization One Million Moms was mad JCPenney picked openly gay comedian Ellen DeGeneres as a spokesperson, but the department store is standing by it's decision.
One Million Moms put out a statement about a week ago asking that JCPenney remove DeGeneres as its spokesperson.
The group said, in part: "The majority of JC Penney shoppers will be offended and choose to no longer shop there. ... By jumping on the pro-gay bandwagon, JC Penney is attempting to gain a new target market and in the process will lose customers with traditional values that have been faithful to them over all these years."
The group asked supporters to make personal phone calls to the company demanding it drop DeGeneres.
But the department store says it has no plans to do so.
DeGeneres used her TV monologue on Wednesday to express her gratitude to her supporters.
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One Million Moms "doesn't think that I should be the spokesperson because I'm gay," DeGeneres said.
She continued, in her trademark deadpan delivery: "For those just tuning in for the first time, it's true. I'm gay. I hope you were sitting down. I hate to break it to you this way."
Ellen also defined her own traditional values.
"I want to be clear. ... I stand for honesty, equality, kindness, compassion, treating people the way you want to be treated, and helping people in need. To me those are traditional values, and that's what I stand for."
Among those supporting DeGeneres is Fox News' Bill O'Reilly.
"What is the difference between a McCarthy-era communist blacklist in the '50s and the Million Moms saying, 'Hey, JCPenney and all you other stores, don't you hire any gay people. Don't you dare.' What is the difference? ..." the news anchor said Tuesday on "The O'Reilly Factor."
"This JCPenney thing is a witch hunt, and it shouldn't happen."
DeGeneres thanked O'Reilly on Twitter and on her show.