Never Stick To What You Know

Whenever I dare to write something semi-political or to discuss what is going on in the world on my small internet platform, I’ve come to expect a response. Mostly a positive one but there is always be some prat who thinks I should wind my neck in, stay on message or stick to what I know. The wonderful thing about the internet is that everyone has a voice and so very many people are unafraid to use that voice to tell you to get back in the kitchen.

No surprise then that the morning after Meryl Streep’s impassioned Golden Globe speech on Sunday night, the vocal masses are out in force. In a not particularly veiled reference to the President Elect, Ms Streep used her huge platform to highlight the importance of the mainstream media in holding decision makers to account. She implored journalists and anyone with a voice to challenge injustice, to not let hateful rhetoric pass by uncontested. She used her influence to persuade her peers and those who idolise her and her impressive body of work, to stand up and be heard in the face of overwhelming negativity.

Of course, the first thing I read on Monday morning was a whole thread of comments telling her to ‘stick to acting’ which, in the unshakably objective opinion of anonymous internet users, she’s not that good at – that’s right trolls, hit ‘em where it hurts.

As a citizen of a nation about to change beyond all recognition, why shouldn’t she use her platform to discuss that change? To empower others to challenge and influence. Whether you agree or disagree with what she said, there is no doubt that it is her absolute right to use whatever means she has at her disposal to voice her opinion.

There’s also the small fact that she is a human being. At the heart of Meryl Streep’s missive was the well documented mockery of a disabled journalist by the President Elect.  As human beings, it is the responsibility of every single one of us to speak up on behalf of those who have been treated unjustly and to challenge those who feel it somehow acceptable to treat others with such contempt.

When we stop challenging these sorts of behaviours, when we stand by and silently witness, we are failing at humanity a bit. So thank you Meryl Streep, thank you for showing the world that speaking up is the right thing to do and do try not to let Donald’s response that you’re a ‘Hilary lover’ keep you awake at night.

Never ever stick to what you know, never let injustice go unchallenged, always use your voice.

Wonderful Wednesday Forty Eight
The Reading List - January
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  • If you’re in a position of authority over any group of people, even if you’re “just” an actor, doing it to do good is better than doing nothing. Meryl Streep is respected, and more power to her to use the respect she’s gained to voice something important.

  • I think you’re right. If you are that position, it’s even more important to shout about these things, you have a platform and a sway with people, use it for good! It’s just important for us normals to do the same, we cannot let this normalisation of shitty behaviour continue. It’s going to be a very interesting year…

    Honestly Aine

  • I never understand why people tell actors and celebrities to ‘stick’ to whatever their profession is and not use their voice to express opinions because I doubt trolling is their full time job yet they still feel inclined to do so. Surely by the same logic they should be telling Trump to stick to reality TV, no?

    I think that some people feel that celebs are insincere and don’t live in the ‘real world’ which is a load of bull – like you say, Meryl is a human being and can still feel compassion for humanity. Unlike a certain President Elect…

    Keeping writing your opinion pieces, we’re all interested in what you have to say and you always write it so eloquently x

    Sick Chick Chic

  • THIS IS SO GOOD!

    She didn’t get up there and try to tell the President how to run the country. She didn’t tell him what policies to implement, and she didn’t give an underesearched uninformed opinion on how to run the country (like some may argue is exactly what he did when he actually ran for President).

    She got up there and she spoke about being human. Something all of us now how to do. In fact Meryl Streep being an Actor is possibly even better equipped at that because it is her job to play humans and understand their motives.

    Most of us learnt right and wrong at a very early age some unfortunately still seem to be figuring that out! Stephie xx

    http://www.acupofcreative.co.uk

  • GAH. This post. So well written. All i can say in response is GAH.

    I am so exhaustipated about the current state of affairs, the trolls, the media, the soon to be president of the USA, the mis-information out there. It makes me feel so overwhelmed.

    But then I read posts like this and it pushes me to learn, to read and to raise my voice about all the injustices! xx

  • Amen Michelle! You’ve expressed everything that I felt about this perfectly. I also don’t really understand the prejudice against acts (I mean I trained as one so I’m slightly biased). But they work just as hard and have just as much schooling as your average Joe so what makes their feelings and opinions worthless due to their profession? x

  • I absolutely agree with you! (Though if I didn’t, I hope in the spirit of this piece I’d have the guts to tell you… whether it’s ‘what I know about’ or not!). 😉

    Wasn’t her speech fantastic? 🙂

    Flora

    http://www.theeverchanginghome.com

  • My respect for Meryl Streep doubled overnight with that video. I liked her as an actress but didn’t know much about her beyond that. Her speech was utterly brilliant, uniting the audience there with her and inspiring us all to do the right thing, no matter what the opposition. And funnily enough, that is exactly what you’ve done with this post. Once again, thank you for voicing what we’re all feeling. Bravo!