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Patricia Arquette’s Oscars speech was somewhat controversial

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If you’ve been on the Internet today, you may have heard that Patricia Arquette stirred up some controversy while accepting the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress last night. On stage, Arquette said, “It’s our time to have wage equality once and for all and equal rights for women in the United States of America.” Meryl Streep made a “you go, girl” gesture, revealing that she had been sitting next to—and presumably engaging in interstitial small talk with—Jennifer Lopez the whole time. Everyone was delighted.

But then Arquette kept talking backstage, and her feel-good message of feminist empowerment was overshadowed by another, less sensitive statement. Here’s what she said:

“So the truth is, even though we sort of feel like we have equal rights in America, right under the surface, there are huge issues that are applied that really do affect women. And it’s time for all the women in America and all the men that love women, and all the gay people, and all the people of color that we’ve all fought for to fight for us now.”


Some took offense at this statement, saying it implied that LGBTQ women and women of color were not the same “women” Arquette claimed she was fighting for. In an attempt to prove she was not trying to be exclusionary, Arquette then took to Twitter:


On the bright side, Women’s Studies 101 professors now have a great “in” for their lessons on intersectionality.