Last night at the Golden Globes, Oprah Winfrey won the Cecil B. DeMille award for outstanding contributions to the world of entertainment, and subsequently our hearts. Oprah was the first black woman to win the prestigious award, and she gave a speech that will go down in history. She talked about sexism, racism, the #MeToo movement, and more. Everybody’s talking about this speech today, and if you didn’t watch it, you’re seriously behind. Below is the full transcript of Oprah’s Golden Globes speech, courtesy of ABC, in case you’re at work and can’t watch a whole video.
In 1964, I was a little girl sitting on the linoleum floor of my mother’s house in Milwaukee watching Anne Bancroft present the Oscar for best actor at the 36th Academy Awards. She opened the envelope and said five words that literally made history—”The winner is Sidney Poitier.”
Up to the stage came the most elegant man I had ever seen. I remember his tie was white, of course his skin was black—I’d never seen a black man being celebrated like that. I’ve tried many, many, many times to explain what a moment like that means to a little girl, a kid watching from the cheap seats as my mom came through the door bone-tired from cleaning other people’s houses.
But all I can do is quote and say that the explanation in Sidney’s performance in “Lilies of the Field,” ‘Amen, amen. Amen, amen.’ In 1982 Sidney received the Cecil B. DeMille Award right here at the Golden Globes, and it is not lost on me that at this moment, there are some little girls watching as I become the first black woman to be given this same award.
It is an honor—it is an honor and it is a privilege to share the evening with all of them and also with the incredible men and women who have inspired me, who challenged me, who sustained me and made my journey to this stage possible. Dennis Swanson, who took a chance on me for “A.M. Chicago,” Quincy Jones, who saw me on the show and said to Steven Spielberg, “Yes, she’s Sophia in ‘The Color Purple;’” Gayle, who’s been the definition of what a friend is; and Stedman who’s been my rock—just a few to name.
I want to thank the Hollywood Foreign Press Association because we know that the press is under siege these days. But we also know it’s the insatiable dedication to uncovering the absolute truth that keeps us from turning a blind eye to corruption and to injustice. To—to tyrants and victims, and secrets and lies. I want to say that I value the press more than ever before as we try to navigate these complicated times, which brings me to this. What I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have. And I’m especially proud and inspired by all the women who have felt strong enough and empowered enough to speak up and share their personal stories. Each of us in this room are celebrated because of the stories that we tell, and this year we became the story.
But it’s not just a story affecting the entertainment industry. It’s one that transcends any culture, geography, race, religion, politics, or workplace. So I want tonight to express gratitude to all the women who have endured years of abuse and assault because they, like my mother, had children to feed and bills to pay and dreams to pursue.
They’re the women whose names we’ll never know. They are domestic workers and farm workers. They are working in factories and they work in restaurants and they’re in academia, engineering, medicine, and science. They’re part of the world of tech and politics and business. They’re our athletes in the Olympics and they’re our soldiers in the military.
And there’s someone else, Recy Taylor, a name I know and I think you should know, too. In 1944, Recy Taylor was a young wife and mother. She was just walking home from a church service she’d attended in Abbeville, Alabama, when she was abducted by six armed white men, raped, and left blindfolded by the side of the road, coming home from church. They threatened to kill her if she ever told anyone, but her story was reported to the NAACP where a young worker by the name of Rosa Parks became the lead investigator on her case, and together they sought justice. But justice wasn’t an option in the era of Jim Crow. The men who tried to destroy her were never prosecuted. Recy Taylor died 10 days ago, just shy of her 98th birthday. She lived, as we all have lived, too many years in a culture broken by brutally powerful men. For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dared to speak the truth to the power of those men. But their time is up. Their time is up. Their time is up.
And I just hope—I just hope that Recy Taylor died knowing that 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’ heart almost 11 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—every man who chooses to listen.
In my career, what I’ve always tried my best to do, whether on television or through film, is to say something about how men and women really behave. To say how we experience shame, how we love and how we rage, how we fail, how we retreat, persevere, and how we overcome. I’ve interviewed and portrayed people who’ve withstood some of the ugliest things life can throw at you, but the one quality all of them seem to share is an ability to maintain hope for a brighter morning, even during our darkest nights.
So I want all the girls watching here, now, to know that a new day is on the horizon! And when that new day finally dawns, it will be because of a lot of magnificent women, many of whom are right here in this room tonight, and some pretty phenomenal men, fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say “Me too” again. Thank you.
The Golden Globes were last night, and as usual there were a few surprises among the winners. Maybe it doesn’t really matter that much, but this is the shit we live for. Here are the biggest snubs from last night, whether they were surprising or just kind of sad.
1. Issa Rae
Okay, Rachel Brosnahan is great in The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and all, but we were really rooting for our girl Issa to pull out a win for Best Actress in a Comedy Series. Considering these shows’ spotty record of acknowledging actors of color, and given how talented Issa is (and how fire her bars are), you’d think they’d have thrown an award at her… but we’ll get to that a little later.
2. ‘Get Out’
No matter how much you talk this movie up to your conservative relatives, you unfortunately can’t say that it’s a Golden Globe-winning film. Daniel Kaluuya’s side-eye throughout the movie is iconic, and should have won multiple awards on its own. Then again, nominating Get Out for the Best Motion Picture in Musical or Comedy was kind of a tough sell to begin with. At least there’s still the Oscars.
3. Margot Robbie
Margot’s performance as Tonya Harding was amazing to watch, but she never really had the awards momentum over Saoirse Ronan in Lady Bird. Either way, now we all know Margot can fucking act, and she’s sure to be nominated again in the future.
4. ‘Game of Thrones’
The era of GoT winning all the awards everywhere seems to be officially over. The show was only nominated for one award last night, and didn’t manage a single acting nomination even though it has like 4,000 characters. Sad!
5. Greta Gerwig
Gerwig’s film Lady Bird pulled out a win for best picture, but but she wasn’t even nominated for Best Director. Natalie Portman pointed out that all the nominees were men, and Greta’s exclusion is a damn shame and proof that Hollywood has not even come close to achieving gender equality.
6. ‘The Crown’
Last year at the Globes, Netflix’s royal drama won big, but this year they basically ignored it and gave the big awards to The Handmaid’s Tale instead. Tbh we can’t really argue with this, but Netflix is definitely putting some pins in their Hulu voodoo doll. Let’s just hope that The Handmaid’s Tale continues to only win awards for Best TV Drama and not Best Documentary.
7. Actors Of Color
Sterling K. Brown and Aziz Ansari brought some diversity to the TV awards, but pasty white people went 6 for 6 in the film acting categories. Not a great look, Hollywood Foreign Press.
8. Reese Witherspoon
Okay, so Reese still had a great night, but it can’t feel great to lose every major award to Nicole Kidman, even if she is your best friend. It’s like when you go out with a friend who rolls up to the pregame looking objectively better than you. You’re happy for her, but you’re also definitely going to get drunk and send at least one shady table text about how “annoying” she’s being. It’s only natural.
This might not so much be a snub as it is serious shade, but irregardless, when Giuliana Rancic asked Debra Messing why she was wearing black, Debra really let her have it. She said she was wearing black “to thank and honor the brave whistleblowers who came forward to share their stories of harassment and assault and discrimination.” But then she really honed in on the E! network, saying, “I was so shocked to hear that E! doesn’t believe in paying their female co-hosts the same as their male co-hosts. I mean, I miss Catt Sadler.” And she did this all while being interviewed live by E! Yeah. We are not worthy.
Debra Messing drags E! (while being interviewed on E!): “I was so shocked to hear that E! doesn’t believing in paying their female co-hosts the same as their male co-hosts” pic.twitter.com/HF3B2uhwtF
— David Mack (@davidmackau) January 7, 2018
10. Sexual Predators
Aaaaaand none for Harvey Weinstein, bye!!