Taraji P. Henson's MTV Awards Speech Will Make You Emotional

Fittingly, her "Fight The System" award was presented by congresswoman Maxine Waters.

Taraji P. Henson
(Image credit: Getty)

Taraji P. Henson just accepted a trophy at the 2017 MTV Movie & TV Awards, and it was emotional on a lot of levels. First off, it was the "Best Fight Against The System" trophy, which replaced the traditional Best Fight award as part of this year's woke shakeup, and was presented by a real-life fighter of the system, Congresswoman Maxine Waters.

"Thank you for your work, thank you for your voice and how you use it, and thank you for being an extraordinary example for all of us, especially in these times," co-host Tracee Ellis Ross began, speaking for all of us.

"Artists, actors, singers and citizens have a unique ability to speak out and inspire change," Waters said, before introducing the nominees, each of which "pushes back against the bullies, and uses their platform to inspire us all." The five nominees were the movies Get Out, Hidden Figures and Loving, and the TV shows Luke Cage and Mr. Robot.


(Image credit: Getty)

Accepting the award for Hidden Figures, Henson said: "This movie was bigger than all of us. We understood that, we understood the task at hand. We understood that this is a part of history that needed to be re-implemented into the blood and veins of American history. For me, it was very important because I grew up with an understanding—no one ever told me that girls couldn't do math and science, but there was an understanding. There was an understanding that it was for boys. I remember getting this script and being very upset, because it felt like a dream was stolen from me. And it became my mission, and everyone's mission who was involved with this film, to dispel that myth, so that another young girl would not grow up thinking that her mind wasn't capable of grasping math and science. If it were not for these women, we wouldn't be in space.

Henson went on to speak out against division, saying "God is very clever. He made us all different for a reason, so we better figure it out."

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Emma Dibdin

Emma Dibdin is a freelance writer based in Los Angeles who writes about culture, mental health, and true crime. She loves owls, hates cilantro, and can find the queer subtext in literally anything.