87th Academy Awards

oscars-2015The Academy Awards aired last night and once again they were hosted by the amazing Neil Patrick Harris. With so many awards and amazing performances, and even more stand-out moments from the amazing nominees and award winners that are sure to make it a night people will remember.

Reese Witherspoon took to the red carpet and talked about the #AskHerMore campaign in which actresses call out the gender inequality. In an interview, Witherspoon said, “This is a movement to say we’re more than just our dresses. There are 44 nominees this year that are women and we are so happy to be here and talk about the work that we’ve done. It’s hard being a woman in Hollywood, or any industry.” Lena Dunham, Shonda Rhimes, and many others took to Twitter to show their support.

Inside the building, Neil Patrick Harris took to the stage and called out the lack of racial diversity among the nominees.

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Patricia Arquette, who won for her role in Boyhood, ended her acceptance speech with a call for women to receive equal pay and equal rights: “To every woman who gave birth to every taxpayer and citizen of this nation: we have fought for everybody else’s equal rights.  It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all, and equal rights for women in the United States of America.” Truly a stand-out moment that rings so true in our time.

Another moment that rings true comes from John Legend and Common’s speech after their amazing performance of “Glory” from the film, Selma.

“Selma is now. Because the struggle for justice is right now…we know that right now the struggle for freedom and justice is real…there are more black men under incarceration today then there were slaves.” The truth behind these words is harsh and something that needed to be said. Looking at all that has been happening, the significance of these words cannot go unheard or be ignored.

Neil Patrick Harris showed how “difficult” it is to correct one’s self when you mispronounce someone’s name. The actor mispronounced Chiwetel Ejiofor name and then you know what he did? He took a moment and corrected himself. I know, the scandal! It’s that easy people. Stop mispronouncing actors and actresses names just because you can’t be bothered to learn how to pronounce it.

Lady Gaga gave a stunning Sound of Music performance that ended with Julie Andrews coming out on the stage.

It was truly amazing and seeing Julie Andrews there was wonderful. That hug at the end between the Queen of Pop and the Queen of Genovia was something that many people excited and absolutely loving it.

And finally, though there were so many more moments I could talk about, Graham Moore’s acceptance speech for Best Adapted Screenplay of The Imitation Game, Moore spoke about how hard he had it growing up and ended by saying to “stay weird and stay different.” Like the speech givers before him, these were words that so many people watching needed to hear.

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The 87th Annual Academy Awards were truly a marvel. Despite the lack of racial diversity, those who did win and stood on that stage made sure no one was forgotten.

Here are the winners of the 87th Academy Awards:

Best Film Editing: Whiplash – Tom Cross
Best Visual Effects: Interstellar – Paul Franklin, Andrew Lockley, Ian Hunter, and Scott Fisher
Best Makeup and Hairstyling: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Frances Hannon and Mark Coulier
Best Costume Design: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Milena Canonero
Best Production Design: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Adam Stockhausen (Production Design) and Anna Pinnock (Set Decoration)
Best Cinematography: Birdman or (THe Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) – Emmanuel Lubezki
Best Sound Editing: American Sniper – Alan Robert Murray and Bub Asman
Best Sound Mixing: Whiplash – Craig Mann, Ben Wilkins, and Thomas Curley
Best Original Score: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Alexandre Desplat
Best Original Song: “Glory” from Selma – John Legend and Common
Best Live Action Short Film: The Phone Call – Mat Kirkby and James Lucas
Best Animated Short Film: Feast – Patrick Osborne and Kristina Reed
Best Documentary – Feature: Citizenfour – Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy, and Dirk Wilutsky
Best Documentary – Short Subject: Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1 – Ellen Goosenberg Kent and Dana Perry
Best Animated Feature Film: Big Hero 6 – Don Hall, Chris Williams, and ROy COnli
Best Foreign Language Film: Ida (Poland) in Polish – Pawel Pawlikoweski
Best Original Screenplay: Birdman or (The Unexpectedn Virtue of Ignorance)Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. and Armando Bo
Best Adapted Screenplay: The Imitation Game – Graham Moore from Alan Turning: The Enigma by Andrew Hodges
Best Supporting Actor: J.K. Simmons – Whiplash as Terence Fletcher
Best Supporting Actress: Patricia Arquette – Boyhood as Olivia Evans
Best Directing: Alejandro González Iñárritu – Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)
Best Actor: Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything as Stephen Hawking
Best Actress: Julianne Moore – Still Alice as Dr. Alice Howland
Best Picture: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) – Alejandro González Iñárritu, John Lesher, and James W. Skotchdopole

Did you watch the Academy Awards? What was your favourite part of the night?

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#FreeTheNipple

Free the NippleDid you know, “in the USA it is effectively illegal for a woman to be topless, breastfeeding included, in 35 states” (According to the Free The Nipple website). Other places such as Canada, Denmark, Poland, and Sweden toplessness is allowed while places like France, Iceland, India, New Zealand, and Taiwan have no laws against breastfeeding in public (many actually laws protecting breastfeeding mothers).

Despite all this though, there is still such a stigma about women’s nipples.

But why? Why are women’s nipples something we have to hide when they’re the exact same as men’s? The only difference is tissue which is enlarged on women due to higher levels of estrogen. So why are women forced to cover up? Why are mothers shamed for breastfeeding in public?

Free The Nipple is a film and campaign that stands against the oppression of women all around the globe. Seeking to empower women, create equality amongst the sexes, and give women everywhere the right to breastfeed if they so choose.

Many celebrities, including Miley Cyrus, Liv Tyler, and Scout Willis have taken part in the #FreetheNipple campaign and their actions sparked a widespread debate about equality and oppression.

The fact that women’s nipples are such a taboo thing is absurd to me. They’re censored on tv and in films and if a woman walks down the street without a top on she can be arrested. But for men it’s the complete opposite which is just as absurd. As I said above, the only difference between men’s nipples and women’s is tissue. But women’s are seen as being sexual when men’s aren’t.

The purpose of women’s breasts is to feed a baby. Personally, I don’t see breastfeeding as being all that sexual. Yet women are constantly told it’s disgusting and to cover up when they do it in public. Women should be able to breastfeed their children wherever and whenever they want to or need to.

I stand by the Free the Nipple campaign. This sort of censorship is unnecessary and completely out of date. It’s 2015 people, time to wake up and smell the roses. Women have nipples! I highly doubt this is a surprise to anyone (I mean, even babies know they’re there). So, I say we free the nipple and change these ancient laws to ones that are positive and allow people of any sex the freedom they deserve.

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Learn more about Free the Nipple by visiting their website

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Shoulders Too Sexy?

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Last Saturday was supposed to be a fun night for high school students at a school in Utah. But for one student, things didn’t go quite the way they were supposed to. Sixteen year old high school junior, Gabi Finlayson, was called out in front of everyone for not having her shoulders covered.

Finlayson had been in Paris with her mother when she bought the dress, which has two inch straps, in compliance with her high school’s dress code. In an interview with Yahoo Parenting, Finlayson spoke about how much she loved the dress, but was left “feeling shamed and embarrassed” when she was forced to wear her coat all night.

But why was her dress such a problem? It followed the school’s two inch strap rule, so why did they call her out? Are a girl’s shoulders really so sexual that she can’t show them in public?

No, they’re not. At least, not until someone makes them so. By calling Finlayson out, she was being told that she needs to cover up, that she needs to hide her body because it’s too sexual. If we are sexualizing girl’s bodies while they’re still in school, I really don’t think it’s the girls that are the problem.

For all the years I was in school girls couldn’t show their shoulders or wear shorts that went above the knee. The reason? It was too distracting and too sexual. Now, I don’t know about you, but I don’t find knees all that erotic. I’m sure there are some people out there who do and that’s fine. Whatever floats your boat. But when a ten year old can’t wear shorts to school because it’s too distracting and sexual, you need to be looking at the men who said that and not at the girl.

I would walk down the hallway and see boys with their pants hanging down and boxers out for all to see. They’d wear shirts that say ‘women belong in the kitchen’. But were they ever reprimanded? No. What this says is that it’s okay to make jokes at a woman’s expense, but if she tries to wear something comfortable in thirty degree heat then it’s not okay. Girls at my school used to get sent home for wearing a tank top, but not once did a boy get sent home for having his boxers hanging out. You know what that says? It’s more important for boys to have a comfortable work environment than for a girl to get an education. And that’s simply not true. It’s either all or nothing. If shoulders aren’t allowed to be seen, neither are boxers. If boys can have their boxers hanging out, then girls can wear tank tops.

We need to stop sexualizing girl’s bodies. Women aren’t pieces of meat, we’re human beings. When a girl wears a tank top to school, it’s because it’s hot outside and she doesn’t want to spend the next five to six hours soaked in sweat. They’re not trying to distract anyone, they’re trying to be comfortable while getting an education.

If someone says a girl’s shoulders are too sexualized and distracting, it’s them that should be spoken to, not the girl.

*Photo provided to Yahoo by Finlayson’s Mother*

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Broad Blog Too Broad?

blogSo I did a lot of research before starting this blog, trying to get an idea of how to run it and the kind of content to include. I can safely say that everything I found was incredibly… unhelpful. Everything I read said to find your niche and write about it. Blog about what you like. Well, I’m already doing that over on my other blog and this blog isn’t like that one.

That’s where I talk about writing and post book and film reviews. This blog isn’t one where I choose one topic and talk about it. I want this to be one where I talk about lots of stuff. I can be pretty opinionated and I have lots of stuff I care about and want to talk about. On top of that, I’m a writer, which means a blog is the perfect place to get a discussion going. This blog won’t be one thing, but many things. Some topics you may find here are:

Feminism
LGBTQ+
Shark Finning/Whaling
Films and Shows
On This Day in History…
Stuff Going on in the World
Experiences in general

Essentially, I’m going to be talking about pretty much anything. Now, a lot of things I read said starting a blog this broad would be too much. Too overwhelming. But how would I know if it’s too overwhelming without even trying? I can always talk about things and if it’s too much I can change them. But for now here it is. If you have something you would like me tot talk about leave a comment or visit my contact page!

Is there anything you want to hear about?

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