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Wanda Sykes on coming out: 'I kind of shocked myself'

By Katie McLaughlin, CNN
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Wanda Sykes: Harder being gay than black
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Comedian Wanda Sykes came out publicly as a lesbian in 2008

  • Sykes says that Proposition 8's passage in California angered her

  • Sykes on President Barack Obama: "I think he's doing a great job"

Watch the full interview with Wanda Sykes on Thursday. "Piers Morgan Tonight" airs weeknights at 9 ET on CNN/US and on CNN International at 0200 GMT (live simulcast), 1200 GMT, and 2000 GMT and HKT.

(CNN) -- When Piers Morgan asked Wanda Sykes if she meant it when she said earlier it was harder to be gay than to be black, Sykes replied, "To a certain point, yes. I believe that. I'm not talking about the history of African-Americans. I'm talking about at this point right now."

The stand-up comic and actress is a guest on Thursday's "Piers Morgan Tonight."

Sykes publicly came out in November 2008 at a rally after California voters passed Proposition 8, a ban on same-sex marriage. She gave an impromptu speech at the event, which she told Morgan she had "no intentions" of making.

"I kind of shocked myself," the comedian told the CNN host. "I was in the middle of it, and it was from anger."

Sykes, who was married to a man from 1991 to 1998, married her female partner, Alex, in October 2008. The couple met in 2006.

When Morgan asked her about the pros and cons of coming out, Sykes said the best thing was she had "absolutely nothing to hide. I mean, I am what I am and this is it. So now, you know, you thought I had a big mouth before, now it's just crazy. I'm like over the top, you know. There's nothing that I can't say.

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"The worst thing, I guess, is just dealing with it, you know, like with family, and it's not necessarily the worst thing but, man, it's like every day I get invited to some gay event, you know. It's like, can you come to this gay event? Can you come support this? And it's like, good Lord, if I go show up at all these gay events, I'm not going to make any money. I'm going to be a broke gay. I'm going to be the brokest lesbian out there."

When the subject turned to recent political scandals such as the fallout over a lewd picture sent from Rep. Anthony Weiner's Twitter account, Sykes told Morgan, "OK, here's the thing. The man's last name is Weiner so, you know, I kind of believe that he gets all the wiener jokes, you know? He's probably been doing this since fifth grade, sixth grade, people been calling him wiener, look at my wiener. ..."

Morgan asked Sykes how she thought President Barack Obama -- whom the comedian supported as a candidate -- was doing.

"I think he's doing a great job," Sykes said. "The thing is, people don't realize how screwed up the country was, you know? He pretty much pulled it out of the pits. And I think he's doing a great job."

She continued, "He's a thinker. He's very thoughtful, and we're not used to that. We're used to fly-off-the-handle, crazy presidents. 'Let's just go blow stuff up,' you know?"

When Morgan called the killing of Osama bin Laden "an extraordinary moment for Obama," which -- had it not worked, "could have been disastrous for him," Sykes nodded her head.

"Totally," Sykes agreed. "He made the right decision. He got the information. He had his advisers, the military, and he told them what the deal was and he said, 'OK, let's -- let's do it!' "

Watch Piers Morgan Live weeknights 9 p.m. ET. For the latest from Piers Morgan click here.

 
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