Oprah Winfrey issues call-to-arms at Golden Globes
Oprah Winfrey has issued a powerful call-to-arms while accepting the most prestigious award at the 75th annual Golden Globes.
The talk show legend used her acceptance speech to defend freedom of the press and thanked all the women – and men – who have come forward to shine a light on sexual harassment in Hollywood and beyond.
“We all know the press is under siege these days,” she said. “But we also know it is the insatiable dedication to uncovering the absolute truth that keeps us from turning a blind eye to corruption and injustice – to tyrants and victims and secrets and lies. I want to say I value the press more than ever before as we try to navigate these complicated times.”
Winfrey said as a little girl in 1964, she watched Sydney Poitier become the first black man to win an Academy Award for best actor.
“I’d never seen a black man being celebrated like that,” she said. “It is not lost on me that at this moment there are some little girls watching as I become the first black women to be given the same award [which Poitier later won in the ’80s].”
The 63-year-old then acknowledged the generations of women who were forced to endure years of harassment and abuse without speaking out because they had dreams to pursue and bread to put on the table.
“Speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have,” she said. “I’m especially proud and inspired by all the women who have felt strong enough and powerful enough to speak up and share their stories.
“But it’s not just a story affecting the entertainment industry. It’s one that transcends any culture, geography, race, religion, politics or workplace.”
It was the TV personality’s closing words, though, that drew the most applause and earned a standing ovation.
“I want all the girls watching here now to know that a new day is on the horizon,” she said. “And when that new day finally does [come], it will be because of a lot of magnificent women, many of whom are in this room and some pretty wonderful men, were fighting hard to make sure they become the leaders that take us to the time when nobody ever has to say ‘me too’ again.”
Backstage in the media room, the TV legend continued to drive home her message of hope.
“I always think and know – having watched over the years thousands and thousands of interviews – that when something really negative is brewing [like the Weinstein saga] … the direct opposite reaction is possible,” she said.
“I think wearing black in solidarity is one step. I think that what Time’s Up is doing with the legal defence fund is a major step. Now that we’ve all joined as one voice, it feels like empowerment to those women who never had it.”
Last year’s Cecil B DeMille Award was won by Meryl Streep, who caused a stir after a rousing speech about Donald Trump without ever using the US president’s name. After this year’s awards ceremony wrapped up, Streep told a reporter – half-jokingly – that Oprah should run for president in 2020. Asked Meryl Streep what she thought of Oprah’s speech. Her answer: “She launched a rocket tonight. I want her to run for president. I don’t think she had any intention [of declaring]. But now she doesn’t have a choice.”??? Steven Zeitchik (@ZeitchikWaPo) January 8, 2018Posted in: 苏州美甲