Obama awards Medal of Freedom to baseball star Banks, Oprah

WASHINGTON Thu Aug 8, 2013 4:37pm EDT

Related Topics

Photo

Under the Iron Dome

Sirens sound as rockets land deep inside Israel.  Slideshow 

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - From Bill Clinton to Ernie Banks to Loretta Lynn, some of the most famous figures in American sports, politics and music were awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Thursday by President Barack Obama.

The award is the highest U.S. civilian honor and to mark the 50th anniversary of the medal, Obama chose to honor a group of people who are household names to Americans.

These are among the notable names on the president's Medal of Freedom list:

Clinton, president from 1993-2001, was cited for his work at the Clinton Foundation and its global effort to promote health and strengthen economies.

Banks, famously dubbed "Mr. Cub" for his 19 years on the Chicago Cubs, played in 11 All-Star games, hit more than 500 home runs and has been in the Baseball Hall of Fame since 1977.

Lynn, a country music singer who was raised in the coalfields of Kentucky, was the subject of the movie "Coal Miner's Daughter" and was one of the genre's first major female stars in the early 1960s.

Ben Bradlee was editor of The Washington Post during the Watergate scandal that brought down President Richard Nixon in the 1970s. The Post was in the news this week when Amazon's Jeff Bezos purchased the struggling newspaper.

Oprah Winfrey, best known for creating the "Oprah Winfrey Show," the highly rated talk show, is also an actress who starred in the "Color Purple."

Others on the list included former Indiana Republican Senator Richard Lugar, the late Hawaii Democratic Senator Daniel Inouye, former North Carolina basketball coach Dean Smith, feminist Glorida Steinem, civil rights leader Cordy Tindell "C.T." Vivian, jazz artist Arturo Sandoval, chemist Mario Molina and the late astronaut Sally K. Ride.

(This story was refiled to delete extraneous word from headline)

(Reporting by Steve Holland; Editing by Doina Chiacu)

FILED UNDER:
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (3)
JeromeJones wrote:
Oprah Winfrey? Wow, did not realize what a brown-noser Obama was until now. Oprah Winfrey? You kidding me? Who is next Maury Povich, Montel Williams, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz or what about Judge Judy Seidlin or Jerry Springer? What a crock! He is an awful president. Too bad you can’t have a president impeached for being so half-witted. Figures he gives a metal to Billy Clinton, he was another half-wit, who also though he was smarter than everyone else.

Aug 08, 2013 6:20pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JeromeJones wrote:
Oprah Winfrey? Wow, did not realize what a brown-noser Obama was until now. Oprah Winfrey? You kidding me? Who is next Maury Povich, Montel Williams, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz or what about Judge Judy Seidlin or Jerry Springer? What a crock! He is an awful president. Too bad you can’t have a president impeached for being so half-witted. Figures he gives a metal to Billy Clinton, he was another half-wit, who also though he was smarter than everyone else.

Aug 08, 2013 6:20pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
BC2 wrote:
Oprah is being awarded a few years too late. Her advisors have steered her into Springer-ville. OWN is no better than a bad Bravo (“Housewives..” or TLC, “Honey Boo Boo”). Obama should not award her this now. Her legacy is tainted at the moment. While she is trying to salvage a bad business move, she is also tainting her image that awards her great honors like Obama’s. When she clears her plate of this nonsense, give her the accolades. But right now, her name is on some despicable stuff.

Aug 08, 2013 11:25pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.