Activism Hits The Red Carpet And Oprah Hits A Home Run At The Golden Globes
Added 01-08-18 01:06:01am EST - “Recent stories of sexual harassment and abuse in Hollywood inspired black dresses and unexpected guests at the Golden Globes. In the actual awards races, Three Billboards, Ladybird, and Amazon scored.” - Npr.org
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Oprah Winfrey, the first black woman to win the Cecil B. DeMille Award, spent most of her speech time at the 75th Golden Globes talking about the long fight for women's justice. NBCUniversal via Getty Images hide caption
Oprah Winfrey, the first black woman to win the Cecil B. DeMille Award, spent most of her speech time at the 75th Golden Globes talking about the long fight for women's justice.
Only a few minutes into Sunday night's Golden Globes red-carpet broadcast on E!, Debra Messing explained to host Giuliana Rancic why nearly all the women were wearing black. (The men were, too, but they always do that.) Messing explained that it was part of the Time's Up initiative, which supports women who suffer from sexual harassment and assault — and not just in Hollywood. She went on to call out the recent departure from E! News of host Catt Sadler, who says she left after discovering she was making nowhere near the money her male co-host was making. Other actresses followed Messing's lead, repeatedly dunking on the very network hosting the broadcast, turning its ubiquity on awards day against it. That's a peculiar power, but they had it, and they used it well.
Awards shows can make famous people seem obsequious and grasping. It was unusual to see one that often found them using their time on stage to make demands, or to be angry, or simply to have the conversations they chose to have.
The red-carpet activism went beyond black dresses. Actresses brought up the money the Time's Up initiative has raised. They talked about the importance of standards for the representation of women of color particularly — and they did it using the word "intersectionality." Perhaps most significantly, a number of actresses walked the red carpet accompanied by experienced activists who work on behalf of women outside the entertainment industry. Michelle Williams was joined, for instance, by Tarana Burke, who began using the phrase "Me Too" years ago in her advocacy for women of color who'd been sexually abused. And E!, which normally inquires about dresses and asks women to pose for photos of their shoes and nails, broadcast interview after interview in which these activists were introduced and their organizations named.
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