“Yes, it’s hard when we watch the news today…for every moment of triumph, there are sadly moments of tragedy. And those who want to return to the past now have the reins of power in their hands. But we should not fear. We should always have, as a very wise man once said, ‘the audacity of hope.’”
These words were spoken by none other than “Black-ish” star Anthony Anderson, who hosted the 48th NAACP Awards last Friday. The non-televised event served as a tribute to honor, recognize, and celebrate people of color who have made meaningful contributions to entertainment.
Among the winners of the highly-anticipated event were Denzel Washington, who received the award for ‘Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture’ for his portrayal of Troy Maxson in his recent film, Fences.
Other winners included Taraji P. Henson for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture for her recent film, Hidden Figures, “Queen Sugar” from OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network) for Outstanding Drama Series, and Sterling K. Brown for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series, called This Is Us.
Washington was met with a standing ovation as he made his way to the stage to accept his award.
“Keep working, keep striving,” said Washington. “Fall down seven times, get up eight. Ease is a greater threat to progress than hardship. So keep moving, keep growing, keep learning. See you at work.”
It seems as though Washington’s character portrayal in Fences had a lasting effect on him. His strength, dignity, and courage shone through wholeheartedly during his acceptance speech.
Or, maybe it’s just the name of the film that had a resounding effect. Fences, after all, have to be strong to keep people out — or in. In fact, some manufacturers claim that vinyl fences are almost five times stronger and four times more flexible than wood fences. And after Friday night, there’s no doubt about it — Washington has definitely reached ‘vinyl fence’ status.
Whatever the case may be, Denzel and every other winner or nominee should be proud of being recognized for making a meaningful contribution to arts entertainment this year.