*This is long, but I urge you to read it and share it with the world.
“A new day is on the horizon! And when that new day finally dawns, it’ll be because of a lot of magnificent women… and some pretty phenomenal men, fighting hard to make sure they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say ‘Me Too’ again.”
These were the words Oprah Winfrey left millions with, myself included, from her acceptance speech after receiving the Cecil B. DeMille award at the 2018 Golden Globes.
If you’ve been on the internet at any point after the event, you’ve seen something pertaining to this speech — it was a big, BIG deal. Oprah praised women everywhere for “speaking your truth,” to ignite the fire that would lead to the viral #MeToo movement that spread through social media just a few months prior.
“What I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have,” Oprah said, as she tactfully praised the women of Hollywood for breaking their silence to take down the men who abused their industry-given power and bring justice to those who fell victim to their corruption.
“This year,” Oprah said, “we became the story.”
This story doesn’t just effect the entertainment industry, Oprah clarified, but “transcends any culture, geography, race, religion, politics, or workplace.”
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Oprah cited the story of Recy Taylor, who was sexually assaulted and threatened by six armed white men on her way home from church.
“She lived, as we all have lived, in a time broken by brutally powerful men. And for too long, women have not been heard or believed. They dared to speak their truth to the power of those men, but,” Oprah stressed, “…their time is up”
The reason I’m writing this today is because Oprah included a very specific detail in her speech that is often forgotten in this conversation — the other men of the world.
I went to Emerson College, where inclusivity is an area the school places great pride on, and with good reason. I saw first-hand many wonderful demonstrations of female pride and feminism, but I never understood why some associated individuals would look down upon men, myself included, they don’t even know just for identifying as men.
Needless to say, this type of action wasn’t very encouraging to a man hoping for a more harmonious future, which is why this speech is a big, BIG deal to me as a man. This speech acknowledges the existence of good men, invites them to join this movement, and subsequently offers a solution — a lesson in morality for all men to practice when coexisting the women, other men, and non-binary gendered individuals in their lives.
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“I just hope that Recy Taylor died knowing her truth, like the truth of so many other women who were tormented in those years, and even now tormented, goes marching on. It was somewhere in Rosa Parks’s heart almost eleven years later when she made the decision to stay seated on that bus in Montgomery. And it’s here with every woman who chooses to say ‘Me Too,” and every man who chooses to listen,” Oprah said.
Nearly all of these stories begin with a man and end with with an experience no woman, nor man, nor child, should ever have to harbor in their memories.
To the good men of the world, you know who you are, and you know who is not like you. The fact is, WE can’t snap our fingers and eradicate these rotten individuals from our identity. It’d be nice, because they’re tarnishing OUR good name, but it ain’t that easy.
It is our responsibility to set the example for our peers, your children, and for future generations to see what respect, understanding, and mindfulness look like and how we apply those tools in our everyday lives.
To the brave women of the world, we are on your side, we wish to live in harmony, and we will help you fight injustice, inequality, and corruption.
Together, we’ll take these words into tomorrow; “A new day is on the horizon! And when that new day finally dawns, it’ll be because of a lot of magnificent women… and some pretty phenomenal men, fighting hard to make sure they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say ‘Me Too’ again.”
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