After actress Patricia Arquette’s winning speech at the Oscars received applause and appreciation from people all around the world including Hollwood giants like Meryl Streep, Arquette’s comments in the press room landed her in a pickle.
After she mentioned the need for wage equality on stage she continued talking on the issue in the press room and said: “So the truth is, even though we sort of feel like we have equal rights in America, right under the surface there are huge issues that are at play that really do affect women. And it’s time for all the women in America, and all the men that love women and all the gay people and all the people of color that we’ve all fought for to fight for us now!”
Here she technically talked about four groups: women, men who love women, gays and people of colour. While some applaud her for urging other marginalized groups to stand up for women; her inability to specify that when she speaks of ‘women,’ she also means women of colour, did not sit well with many.
Nyasha Junior of the Washinton Post said: “Often, women’s coalitions and organizations focus on gender to the exclusion of race. As discussed in the classic volume “All the Women Are White, All the Black Are Men, But Some of Us Are Brave: Black Women’s Studies,” white women are used to represent women, and African American men are used to represent African Americans. Yet, African American women are both African Americans and women. Some are even queer!”
Others took offense because she blamed the constitution of the country. David Azerrad of the Daily Signal believes that Arquette’s blaming the constitution for women’s inequality, is wrong since the constitution never segregates between the country’s citizens on the basis of sex. He further argues that America was the first country in the world dedicated to the proposition that all men and women are created equal since women in New Jersey were voting at the time of Founding.
Even though it’s difficult to completely disagree with both these points, the fact that an Oscar winning actress goes on stage and talks about women’s rights instead of talking about insignificant details about her life or cracking jokes; is commendable. Of course, she could’ve picked her words more carefully but her intention was not to put down a group of marginalized women but talk about women empowerment on the whole.
[Featured Picture Courtesy: ABC News]