- Associated Press - Sunday, April 7, 2019

Journalist Christiane Amanpour evoked the grave dangers faced by reporters uncovering truths around the world and especially decried the use of the term “fake news” as a weapon against journalists.

She was among five celebrities honored Friday for their philanthropic work at Variety’s annual Power of Women event in New York.

“Increasingly we are in a war from within our own democratic societies where we are bludgeoned over the head day after day by this untruthful trope of fake news. It is very, very difficult to keep going,” she said.

Honored for her work with the Committee to Protect Journalists, Amanpour made a note of praising Jacinda Ardern, prime minister of New Zealand, for her leadership in the wake of the recent mass shooting in Christchurch in which 50 people died.

“Out of the most brutal and unspeakable tragedy, she rose to the occasion like I’ve seen very few world leaders do,” she said of Ardern. “That’s power.”

The annual event was hosted by comedian Michelle Wolf, who riffed on recent news stories like the college admissions scandal and accusations of unwanted touching by former vice president Joe Biden.

Taraji P. Henson teared up as she discussed suicide rates among young black people. Gigi Hadid did the same as she spoke about the fate of the Rohingya people in refugee camps in Bangladesh.

Bette Midler spoke passionately about her restoration work cleaning up neighborhoods in New York City through the organization she founded in 1995. Singer Kacey Musgraves talked about the importance of arts education for young people, particularly music.

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