AceShowbiz - President Barack Obama awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to 19 recipients on Monday afternoon, November 24 in the White House. Among the recipients were Meryl Streep, Stevie Wonder, longtime NBC anchor Tom Brokaw and Ethel Kennedy.
When presenting Streep with the medal, Obama confessed his love for her. "I have said publicly, I love Meryl Streep. I love her. Her husband knows I love her, Michelle knows I love her," the president of the U.S. said, "There's nothing nothing either of them can do about it."
He continued to praise the 65-year-old actress, saying, "She inhabits her characters so fully and compassionately, saying, 'It is the greatest gift of human beings that we have this power of empathy.' And off the screen as an advocate for women and girls, she uses that gift to help others write the stories of their choosing and to encourage greater empathy in the rest of us. So, Meryl is truly one of America's leading ladies."
While honoring Wonder, Obama said, "Early copies of Stevie Wonder's classic album 'Talking Book' had a simple message written in braille: 'Here is my music, it is all I have to tell you how I feel, know that your love keeps my love strong.' This is by the way the first album I ever bought with my own money. I was ten years old, maybe 11."
"A musical prodigy with an electrifying voice, Stevie's blend of R&B and jazz and funk and blues and soul and whatever else you got speaks of love and loss, justice and equality, war and peace," he praised the "Superstition" singer.
"But what really defines Stevie's music is the warmth and humanity that resonates in every note. Some of the songs helped us to fall in love on the others mended our hearts - and motivated some of us on the campaign trail. And thanks to Stevie all of us have been moved to 'Higher Ground'," he concluded.