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Mark Ruffalo blasts Ellen for calling George W. Bush her 'friend'

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Oct. 10 2019, Updated 8:11 a.m. ET

If you've been on social media at all in the last few days, you've probably heard about all the drama surrounding television host Ellen Degeneres. 

Many Ellen fans and LGBTQ+ activists were disappointed when Ellen was spotted sitting next to former President Bush at a Cowboys vs Packers game on Sunday. Further photos appeared to show the two laughing together. 

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Former President George W. Bush called for a constitutional amendment that would define marriage as a union of a man and a woman in 2004, making him very unpopular with LGBTQ+ activists. His presidency was also heavily criticized over the Iraq war. 

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After Ellen was criticized online for laughing with former President Bush, she defended herself on Monday's episode of the show. Ellen said in part: 

“Here’s the thing: I’m friends with George Bush, and in fact, I’m friends with a lot of people who don’t share the same beliefs that I have,” Ellen said, comparing it to “being friends with people who wear fur” even though she doesn't agree with it. “Just because I don’t agree with someone on everything doesn’t mean I’m not going to be friends with them.”   

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But that response doesn't seem to have satisfied everyone. In a tweet on Wednesday afternoon, Avengers actor Mark Ruffalo blasted Ellen over her stance. 

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The actor wrote: "Sorry, until George W. Bush is brought to justice for the crimes of the Iraq War, (including American-lead torture, Iraqi deaths & displacement, and the deep scars—emotional & otherwise—inflicted on our military that served his folly), we can’t even begin to talk about kindness." 

Ruffalo's tweet led to some mixed reactions, with one user writing: "Thank you @MarkRuffalo for making it clear that if we ever want to live in a world with true kindness that we won’t get there by normalizing war criminals."

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Another added: "Mark until you run for office you have no clue what the hard choices and decisions are. It’s not a bowl of cherries being the leader of the free world. If you think you have all the answers why don’t you run for office?"

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Another concluded: "Thank you Mark for being better than most of your colleagues in Hollywood. More people need to understand that George Bush was a detriment to mankind, even if not as outlandish as Trump." 

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Some fellow celebrities did support Ellen, with Reese Witherspoon writing in a since-deleted tweet: 

"Thank you for this important reminder, Ellen! 'I have friends who don’t think the same things that I do. When I say be kind to one another, I don’t mean be kind to the people who think the same way you do. I mean be kind to everyone.'"  

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Kristen Bell also seemed positive, sharing a photo of Ellen and George W. Bush on Instagram, along with a supportive caption. 

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David Cross labelled Ellen's defense as "neither, 'shut down,' nor was it 'powerful.' It was weak, self-serving, dissmive and eye-opening."  

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Gwen Stefani simply wrote "I love you."

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