Maybe they all thought someone else would do it.
Maybe they thought it wasn’t their place.
Maybe it just wasn’t that important to them.
But for whatever the reason, not a single male Golden Globe winner last night managed to mention #TimesUp, #MeToo, or the movement around sexual assault, harassment, and discrimination roiling Hollywood.
The red carpet was a sea of black, everyone showing solidarity. #TimesUp pins covered lapels, men posted on social media with the hashtag, and activists took the mic to advocate for real, lasting change. Inside, host Seth Meyers opened the night lauding the change around sexual harassment norms. Women presenters and winners spent their time at the podium putting Hollywood on notice. Oprah made everyone cry in her presidential moment as the first black woman to win the Cecil B DeMille Award.
And yet the male presenters and winners said nothing. And they had the opportunity. Aziz Ansari won for acting – he’s the man, he who took his Letterman interview to remind us that “if you believe that men and women have equal right, and the someone asks you if you’re a feminist you have to say yes. Because that’s how words work.” He fumbled through his speech, leaving his feminist talking points for other stages.
Guillermo del Toro won the directing award after Natalie Portman noted the category featured all-male nominees. A rare Latino in Hollywood, he knows what it means to come from an underrepresented group.
Alexander Skarsgard won for his haunting portrayal of an abusive husband in Big Little Lies but didn’t touch on the subject matter of his show. It was such a natural entry point.
Men, you have got to do better. This is just the start of awards seasons – you have plenty of opportunities to right this wrong! You can speak out and stand with us. You can be part of the solution. You can show that there are good men among you and that you understand that you have a stake in this conversation. You can show us that ending abuse is not, in fact, women’s work but part of being a good human.
Now I know this might be hard. Some men think the solution is not being alone, having lunch, or even hiring women. But let’s assume you’re not one of those men. You want things to be better for everyone – you just literally do not know what to say. Well don’t worry, I’ve done the work for you (the answer was to ask a woman all along). So without further ado, here are some remarks you can use when accepting awards:
Tips for Male Winners This Awards Season
For Men Winning In Non-Gendered All-Male Categories (See: Directors, Editors, Cinematographers)
“I am proud of my film and my team and our work. However, this award would mean so much more if I was competing against the entire population and not just my gender.”
For Men Who Are Portraying Abuse
“Whether in our homes or our industry, violence against women and girls is a fact of life. It is terrifyingly common in the US and around the world. I am proud to be amplifying the message of so many brave women who have broken their silence, despite huge personal costs. The time is up for those men who use power and violence to control women. The time is up for those who would keep abuse behind closed doors.”
For Men Who Win and Happen to Have Daughters/Wives/Mothers/Sisters/Female Friends/Know A Woman
“Women are people. It shouldn’t need to be said, but unfortunately it does. We should not discriminate against them because of their sex or gender. Thank you.”
For Men Who Win and Happen to Have Sons/Husbands/Fathers/Brothers/Male Friends/Know A Man
“Men – we have to do a better job of holding each other accountable. We have to believe women when they report abuse, correct our friends when they condone sexist behavior, and punish those who perpetrate abuse. We cannot leave ending sexual abuse and harassment up to women. That’s gone on for too long. And we have to do more than wear a pin or a flattering color we probably would have worn anyways. We have to take some risks, at least as many as we are willing to take for our art. We have to speak out.”
For Men Who Win and Like To Think Of Themselves As Good People
“Time is up on sexual assault and harassment. I am thankful to the women who are leading this movement and step forward to do my part. As the song goes, “’None of us are free if one of us are chained.’”
Share with your man-friends! Tweet to us your own! No excuses, it’s as easy that! See you at the next awards show!
PS Sterling K. Brown – you are excused. Your speech was perfect.
“Dan Fogelman, you wrote a role for a Black man — that could only be played by a Black man. I am being seen as who I am and appreciated for who I am. And it makes it that much more difficult to dismiss me or anyone who looks like me.” – @SterlingKBrown #GoldenGlobes pic.twitter.com/AVHGElpjrQ
— The Mask You Live In (@MaskYouLiveIn) January 8, 2018
This post originally appeared on therepresentationproject.org.