You’ve seen the hashtag and Twitter ruckus all about black girls and how they rock. Black Girls Rock happened and it was brilliant!!! Truly celebrating black womanhood and its attendant power. From Rihanna to Shonda Rhimes, the event was the very definition of dazzling, celebrating talented black women in the entertainment industry.
Rihanna was presented with the Rock Star Award at BET’s Black Girls Rock! event and she rocked her acceptance speech in an epic way.
“Tonight is so important to me because I think I can inspire a lot of young women to be themselves and that is half the battle,” she said. “That is it. Just be yourself, it’s the easiest thing to be. All girls rock. Black girls, we just on another level.”
Watch her full speech below:
Shonda Rhimes took the stage and spoke eloquently about how she brings feminism to the small screen. She attributed her success with Scandal to make the casting of How to Get Away with Murder an easy-as-pie decision for the network. She spoke directly to her daughter, telling her that her generation is the one that matters.
“Your slates are blank your paths are clear your stories are whatever you decide. You are the builders of the 21st century.”
Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton also took the stage to introduce Black Girls Rock founder Beverly Bond.
Each woman who took the stage at the show, which will air Tuesday on BET, gave the audience powerful messages of self-acceptance and self-care, along with advice on how to forge their own path. Here are a few of the best quotes of the night…
“Our differences, our colors, we’re like a garden. We’re all beautiful.”
“I remember looking in the mirror when I was a little girl and looking at all that hair and being like, ‘Why is that there?’ I wanted it to go down so much. I remember suppressing it and brushing it and being so frustrated that I was so big and so bold. I felt like I took up too much space. But because of those women [who raised me], I have learned that…my blackness does not inhibit me from being beautiful and intelligent. In fact it’s the reason why I am beautiful and intelligent.”
“I know it can get tough out there. It can get downright ugly. I have walked the path or some version of it but know that you are designed for greatness. You have a resilience that is in your DNA…whether you want it or not. You are what the world is waiting for. Whether the world acknowledges that or not. Step into your uniqueness. Protect it. Nurture it. It is precious. No one can do what you can do or contribute what you are destined and designed to contribute.”
The mission of BLACK GIRLS ROCK! is to change the world by empowering Black girls to lead, innovate, and serve. BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ Inc., is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, that has been committed to enriching girls through leadership, education, and positive identity development since 2006. BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ Inc. builds the self-esteem and self-worth of young women of color by changing their outlook on life, broadening their horizons and providing tools for self-empowerment and efficacy.
Founded by celebrity DJ and philanthropist, Beverly Bond, BLACK GIRLS ROCK!™ is also a multifaceted movement dedicated to shifting the cultural paradigms of media/music messaging that often negatively impact women and girls. (image and mission statement via Black Girls Rock)