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WATCH: Meryl Streep Slams Trump for Bullying & Calls for an Independent Free Press

Web ExclusiveJanuary 09, 2017
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Watch an excerpt from Meryl Streep’s acceptance speech when she won the Lifetime Achievement Award at Sunday night’s Golden Globes. The Academy Award-winning actress used her address to call for protections for the free press and to criticize President-elect Donald Trump without ever speaking his name, saying the performance that most stunned her this year was Trump’s mocking imitation of a disabled reporter during the 2016 presidential campaign.

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Transcript
This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: Meryl Streep won the Lifetime Achievement Award at Sunday night’s Golden Globes. The Academy Award-winning actress used her speech to call for protections for the free press and to criticize President-elect Donald Trump, without saying his name, saying the performance that most stunned her this year was the mocking imitation of a disabled reporter during the 2016 presidential campaign. This is Meryl Streep.

MERYL STREEP: But there was one performance this year that stunned me. It sank its hooks in my heart, not because it was good. It was—there was nothing good about it. But it was effective, and it did its job. It made its intended audience laugh and show their teeth. It was that moment when the person asking to sit in the most respected seat in our country imitated a disabled reporter—someone he outranked in privilege, power and the capacity to fight back. It—it kind of broke my heart when I saw it, and I still can’t get it out of my head, because it wasn’t in a movie. It was real life. And this instinct to humiliate, when it’s modeled by someone in the public platform, by someone powerful, it filters down into everybody’s life, because it kind of gives permission for other people to do the same thing. Disrespect invites disrespect. Violence incites violence. When the powerful use their position to bully others, we all lose.

OK, go up with that thing. OK, this brings me to the press. We need a principled press to hold power to account, to call them on the carpet for every outrage. That’s why—that’s why our founders enshrined the press and its freedoms in our Constitution. So I only ask the famously well-heeled Hollywood foreign press and all of us in our community to join me in supporting the Committee to Protect Journalists, because we’re going to need them, going forward, and they’ll need us, to safeguard the truth.

One more thing. Once, when I was standing around on the set one day, whining about something—you know, we were going to work through supper or the long hours or whatever—Tommy Lee Jones said to me, "Isn’t it such a privilege, Meryl, just to be an actor?" Yeah, it is. And we have to remind each other of the privilege and the responsibility of the act of empathy. We should all be very proud of the work Hollywood honors here tonight. As my—as my friend, the dear departed Princess Leia, said to me once, "Take your broken heart. Make it into art." Thank you very much.

AMY GOODMAN: That was Academy Award-winning actress Meryl Streep at last night’s Golden Globes, being awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award. This morning, President-elect Donald Trump slammed Streep, tweeting, quote, "Meryl Streep, one of the most overrated actresses in Hollywood, doesn’t know me but attacked last night at the Golden Globes. She is a Hillary flunky who lost big," unquote.

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