On Sunday night, Janet Jackson became the first black woman to receive Billboard’s Icon Award, and during her acceptance speech, she spoke out against sexism, abuse and racism.
After Bruno Mars presented her with the award, Jackson made her short but poignant speech.
“For all our challenges, we live at a glorious moment in history,” she said. “Women have made it clear that we will no longer be controlled, manipulated or abused. I stand with those women, and with men who support us, against discrimination.”
She also delved into her faith during the speech when she spoke about people attempting to divert the discourse surrounding women’s issues and the #MeToo movement: “My prayer is that, weary of such noise, we turn back to the source of all calmness. That source is God. … Everything we lack, God has in abundance.”
During the awards show, Jackson also performed live on television for the first time in a decade.
On an unrelated note, as I was stopped at a light in Washington, D.C., this morning, a panhandler said that I looked like Penny from Good Times.
Take a look at Jackson’s speech above.