by Michele Zipp
Just about everyone with a moral compass wore black to the Golden Globes on Sunday evening in a show of protest against sexual assault and harassment. It’s one of the many responses to the #MeToo movement and its follow up #TimesUp. The drivel of “who are you wearing” was replaced by the vital conversation we all need to be having — why and how are you standing up against predatory and unjust behavior in the workplace, in the world.
“This is not about Hollywood,” actress Debra Messing said on the red carpet. “This is about every woman in every industry, globally.” It is. It’s about women everywhere, dealing with a patriarchal system of gender bias, discrimination, and unbalanced power. Still. In 2018.
The sartorial sea of black was seen on nearly everyone from Meryl Streep to the Stranger Things kids. Michelle Williams even went one step further in making a statement and brought Tarana Burke as her plus one, the woman who created the #MeToo movement years before Hollywood picked up on it. Credit to her. Lift her up — lift up every woman who has been silenced, not heard, ignored. The spotlight is brighter than it has ever been and it’s showing no signs of dimming. Natalie Portman, in black, even went off script to note there were no women in the Best Director category despite the incredible work of several. While standing next to Ron Howard, Portman said, “And here are the all male nominees.”
Words have power. She put truth out there. We will not be silent.
There were many highlights of the night, but perhaps none as empowering as when Oprah took the stage and delivered a speech after being given the Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement. She’s the first black woman to receive the honor.
“ … it’s not just a story affecting the entertainment industry,” she said. “It’s one that transcends any culture, geography, race, religion, politics, or workplace.
“For too long women have not been heard or believed if they dare speak the truth to the power of those men. But their time is up.
“… 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.”
There are now rumblings that Oprah will be running for President in 2020. Journalist Shaun King thinks she’s one of only five people who could beat Trump. I’ve seen postings of support but also some who feel we’re dealing with a celebrity turned President and why would we go through that again. Still, it’s Oprah. He’s Trump. This is talk show host versus reality show host. And this is also a case of two people who couldn’t be more opposite.
It would be interesting to see what name akin to Crooked Hillary 45 would give Oprah. But it’s doubtful he’ll come close to commenting on anything surrounding the Golden Globes … even if it involves a potential threat to his second term.
Trump, a man who has said, “Nobody has more respect for women than I do” has stayed silent on one of the most important movements happening right now.
Let’s remember that Trump is also a man who has also reportedly said, “Women, you have to treat ’em like shit.” And “grab them by the pussy.” There has been not a tweet. Nary a mention. Words have power. The truth out there. And yet Trump is silent.
He’s spending his time bragging about his bigger buttons and being a stable genius. And that’s because he’s the predator in chief and part of the catalyst of the #MeToo movement. At current time, 19 women have accused Trump of various accounts of sexual misconduct, including first wife Ivana Trump.
Why isn’t the media making this a focal point? The time is up not only for Hollywood’s injustices toward women, but for Trump’s brand of locker room misogyny as well, which have spanned decades.
Someone needs to grab him by his tweeting thumbs, tap into his self-proclaimed mental stability and “being, like, really smart” to call him out on his predatory behavior. And we need to take a cue from Rose McGowan and be relentless. He’ll find ways to defend himself, just like he did with his sexual predator pal, Roy Moore. He even defended Bill Clinton once upon a time, until he ran against Hillary, of course. But now, we have to make so much noise that he cannot ignore it. And infiltrate every press conference, every interview, every appearance demanding accountability.
Where are the questions about #MeToo from reporters with access to all people involved with Trump? We need to start seeing the hard questions — the ones that need to be asked. How is Trump different than Harvey Weinstein? We cannot let his trusted diversion tactics work.
We all need to ask ourselves, why and how are we standing up against predatory and unjust behavior by the Commander in Chief in the White House. We can’t wait for Oprah … if that’s even going to happen. The shift is now. We are seeing that accountability is possible and some of the biggest stars in Hollywood are falling.
Words have power. The truth out there. We will not be silent. We owe it to those 19 women.