Monday, 5 March 2018

The Women's March Continues

Fantastic acceptance speech by Frances McDormand paying tribute to women
This morning Hong Kong time I followed the Oscars on live blog feeds and then watched the last three awards announced live on television -- Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Picture.

I'm so glad I caught the last three acceptance speeches, particularly Frances McDormand who won Best Actress for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

It's about a mother who channels her grief and anger into goading the authorities to find out who killed her daughter.

When McDormand's was called out, she marched onto the stairs to the stage like a woman on a mission.

Ashley Judd, Annabella Sciorra and Salma Hayek
"If I could have all the women stand up with me in this moment," she said, urging all the women who were nominated, including Meryl Streep in the front row to get up to take the lead. "Look around, everybody, look around, ladies and gentlemen, because we all have stories to tell, and we all have projects we need to finance."

At the end she said, "I have two words for you -- inclusion rider", which means a clause in the contract where the cast and crew have to be diverse to retain the actor.

Finally we are seeing the start of pay equity -- will that filter down to the rest of us?

Here in Hong Kong there is a massive imbalance between what men and women make here in terms of salaries, let alone leadership positions.

Meanwhile seeing actresses Ashley Judd, Annabella Sciorra and Salma Hayek on stage talking about the #metoo movement, and how "time's up" was another proud moment.

The #metoo movement in China is still nascent
I've been reading as many #metoo stories as I can, particularly those from China. And when I read them, I think about the many women who felt they couldn't speak out without being punished, who continue to have vivid nightmares of what happened to them, who could not live with the shame of what was done to their bodies.

The #metoo movement may be half a world away, but change is happening and it will continue as long as women continue to speak out. Their experiences need to be documented and remembered so that it doesn't happen to the next generation.

The buck stops here.

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