Obama awards Presidential Medal of Freedom
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama says this year's recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom made the world stronger, wiser, more beautiful and more humane.
Obama is praising the artists, activists and lawmakers receiving the award at a White House ceremony. Among the recipients are Ethel Kennedy, actress Meryl Streep and singer-songwriter Stevie Wonder.
Obama says Streep's talent is so immense that she "has no peers." He's praising her work to promote empathy on and off the screen.
Obama calls Wonder a musical prodigy whose warmth and humanity can be heard in every note of his music.
Others receiving the award Monday include NBC journalist Tom Brokaw and Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., the longest-serving member of Congress. Choreographer Alvin Ailey is receiving the award posthumously.