Patricia Arquette’s Oscar Speech Was Both Inspiring and Disheartening

Image credit Robyn Beck /AFP/Getty Images

Image credit Robyn Beck /AFP/Getty Images

In case you haven’t heard, Patricia Arquette gave a rousing speech at the Oscars last night about women’s rights. The moment she gave it, social media lit up with words of praise for the Oscar winner – and the praise was indeed warranted. She used part of her moment in the spotlight to make a powerful statement for women’s rights, though I’m sure there will still be some who bash her for trying to politicize that moment.

If you happened to miss it, here’s part of what she said:

To every woman who gave birth, to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation, we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights. It is our time to have wage equality once and for all, and equal rights for women in the United States of America!

It’s easy to see why the Internet lit up with praise for the actress.

I wish I felt the same.

Not that I don’t commend her for what she said; she was spot-on. It’s undeniable that what she said was absolutely fantastic. That being said, I just can’t help but feel saddened that, in 2015, this is still an issue. How is that even possible? Why is “equal rights for women” still even considered a “debate”?

The fact that these simple words brought such a rousing applause and ignited a wave of support on the Internet shows just how far we still have to go as it pertains to women finally being treated as equals in this country.

Here we are, nearly a century removed from women’s suffrage, yet women in the U.S. are still struggling to be treated as fairly and equally as men. It’s almost inconceivable to think that this can actually be a reality. It all seems so simple, doesn’t it? Whatever rights you give to me, give to women. Whatever you would pay a man, pay a woman.

Yes – it’s just that simple. 

Except, sadly, it’s not. We’ve had Republicans oppose bills that would guarantee equal pay for women who were doing the same job as a man, and conservative are infamous for doing just about everything they can to restrict the rights a woman has over her own body. And those are just two of the many issues where women are still struggling to truly gain equality and fair treatment.

Again, this is 2015 – not 1915.

I think one of the worst parts of all of this is that the politicians who are often the ones responsible for impeding bills that would help grant women equal rights, or pushing for laws that would restrict them, are males. Apparently men are the utmost experts when it comes to handling issues pertaining to equality for women, right?

So, while I applaud the words said by Ms. Arquette, and they were truly inspirational, it’s a bit disheartening to realize that here we are, in the year 2015, and such statements still need to be made about women’s rights. Because, sadly, there are still so many people in this country who keep doing just about everything they can to prevent women from finally being treated as true equals.

Hit me up on Twitter and let me know what you think.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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