So while I'm enjoying all of this unprecedented—and, frankly, a little bit uncomfortable—attention and personal success, in large part due to my activism off the field, Colin Kaepernick is still effectively banned from the NFL, for kneeling during the national anthem in protest of known and systematic police brutality against people of color, known and systematic racial injustice, and known and systematic white supremacy. I see no clearer example of that system being alive and well than me standing before you right now. It would be a slap in the face to Colin, and to so many other faces not to acknowledge, and for me personally, to work relentlessly to dismantle that system that benefits some over the detriment of others, and frankly is quite literally tearing us apart in this country.
While we all have injustices we are facing—for me personally, a very public fight with our [US Soccer] Federation over why we don't deserve to be paid equally; some people even say we do our job better. I don't know! It's crazy!—I still know in my heart of hearts and my bones that I can do more. And that we can do more. And I know that because we just have to. We must. It's imperative that we do more.
My mom, who's here today, looking stunning, by the way—shout-out to mom—impressed upon me and my twin sister at a very young age, 'You ain't shit cause your good at sports. You ain't shit cause you're popular. You're gonna be a good person. You're gonna be kind. And you're gonna do the right thing. You're gonna stand up for yourself, always. You're gonna stand up for each other, always. And you're damn sure going to stand up for other people. Always.
She taught us that in kindness and in caring and in giving a shit and sharing—that's abundance. That's the kind of culture we want to live in. I feel like we live in this scarcity type culture; one of my best friends always says that. That's not the world I wanna live in. I think we can move on from losing alone to the belief in winning together.
With that abundance in mind, I want to re-imagine what it means to be successful, what it means to have influence, what it means to have power, and what that all looks like.
I’ve gained this incredible platform in such a short period of time, but I'm not gonna stand on it alone. I refuse to do that. There's gonna be ladders on every side, all over the place. And I'm not gonna act like it wasn’t Colin Kaepernick, Tarana Burke and the #MeToo Movement, Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tometi of Black Lives Matter, the women of Time's Up, Harvey Milk, Gloria Steinem Audre Lorde, Travon Martin, Sandra Bland, and the injustices that so many others face that have put me in this very position. And I'm not gonna act like my whiteness has nothing to do with me standing before you now. I don’t want to live in that kind of world. I don't think that kind of world is the world that suits everybody and is gonna move us forward in the direction that we need to go.
We’ve gotta switch the game up.
Caring is cool.
Lending your platform to others is cool.
Sharing your knowledge and your success and your influence and your power is cool.
Giving all the fucks is cool. Doing more is cool.
I don't need to say that to all the other women who are being honored tonight. Everyone is doing that. But to everyone else in this room, we have such an incredible opportunity to redefine what power and influence and success looks like. From the looks of it, this looks like a room full of powerful and influential and successful people. So share that platform. Throw your ladders down. It's our time. We're ready for this. And it needs to happen. This is such a pivotal movement for us. There's so much momentum, but we have to move forward and we have to be better. So everybody: We have to do more. We're here. We're ready. Everyone's ready to do more? Good!
Thank you so much for this amazing award. Thank you, everyone.
Find out more about Glamour's 2019 Women of the Year here.