Michelle Williams’ speech about a woman’s right to choose was the most powerful moment at last night’s Golden Globes
In a Golden Globes ceremony that was filled with heartfelt moments, there was one speech that was the single most powerful moment in this year’s event — or any Golden Globes ceremony in recent memory. When Michelle Williams took the stage after winning the Best Actress award for her role in Fosse/Verdon, she made sure to acknowledge a very real factor that helped her reach this moment in her career: Her right to choose.
In her speech, Williams thanked the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for acknowledging not just the choices she made on screen, but also in all the years leading up to the role that earned her this award.
“I’m grateful for the acknowledgment of the choices I’ve made, and I’m also grateful to have lived at a moment in our society where choice exists. Because as women and as girls, things can happen to our bodies that are not our choice,” she said.
Williams continued, “I’ve tried my very best to live a life of my own making, and not just a series of events that happened to me, but one that I could stand back and look at and recognize my handwriting all over — sometimes messy and scrawling, sometimes careful and precise, but one that I had carved with my own hand. And I wouldn’t have been able to do this without employing a woman’s right to choose: to choose when to have my children, and with whom.”
Williams never actually said the word “abortion,” but her speech made it clear that that’s what this was about. Her right to choose allowed her to continue the pursuit of her career on a timeline she chose, in a way that many women are not able to. The research is clear that having children is a detriment to women’s careers, and that even though women in the U.S. typically work full-time in the same year that they give birth, they earn less and receive fewer promotions than both their male counterparts and women who don’t have children. And that’s only viewing women’s right to choose as a work issue. Having children is a medical choice, a financial choice, and a deeply personal choice, and no one has the right to make that choice but the woman who will carry and care for that child.
Williams ended her speech, “I know my choices may look different than yours, but thank God or whomever we pray to that we live in a country founded on the principle that I am free to live by my faith and you are free to live by yours.”
We couldn’t agree more.