It’s one of the oldest forms of communication in the book, but a powerful speech can seriously light a fire under the internet.
Some speeches may be interrupted, like that of Prince Harry who had a stand-off with a bumblebee during a speech about his dad. But most made their mark. They moved, infuriated, devastated, shocked, and inspired folks on social media, making us cry or air-punch right at our desks.
SEE ALSO: 13 activists who gave us hope in 2018
Here’s some of the unforgettable speeches that got the internet fired up this year. If you missed one, now’s the time to catch up.
Emma Gonzalez’s March For Our Lives speech
Parkland activist Emma Gonzalez delivered an unforgettable and devastating address during the March For Our Lives rally in Washington, D.C. in March. Most memorably, she stood in silent remembrance for six minutes and 20 seconds — the time it took a gunman at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School to claim the lives of 17 of her fellow students.
Memorable quote:“In a little over six minutes, 17 of our friends were taken from us, 15 were injured, and everyone, absolutely everyone, was forever altered. Everyone who was there understands. Everyone who has been touched by the cold grip of gun violence understands.”
Natalie Portman’s stirring ‘Power of Women’ speech
There have been many empowering, applause-worthy speeches since the inception of Time’s Up, but Natalie Portman’s is worth noting. The Oscar-winning actress delivered one heck of a speech atVariety‘s “Power of Women” event in October, pulverising Harvey Weinstein before unpacking gender parity and diversity in the entertainment industry and other workforces.
Memorable quote: “Be embarrassed if everyone in your workplace looks like you.”
Donald Trump’s UN speech, which the world literally laughed at
There was a day in September, when the world literally laughed out loud at Donald Trump. During the president’s address to the United Nations General Assembly, Trump boasted that “my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country.” Crowd guffawing ensued. But guys, Trump claimed hewantedeveryone to laugh. Nice try.
Memorable quote:I didn’t expect that reaction but it’s okay.”
Oprah’s powerful speech at the Golden Globes
An early speech for 2018, but one that would prove hard to beat. Oprah’s acceptance speech for the esteemed Cecil B. DeMille award at the Golden Globes in January made us cry — and inspired us to take action. Her powerful speech is a moving moment for Oprah herself, who changed the Hollywood landscape for women and people of color, but it became a larger rallying cry for the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements. Plus, it made folks champion a 2020 presidential run like crazy.
Memorable quote:“For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dare speak the truth to the power of those men. But their time is up.”
Mindy Kaling’s burn-after-burn commencement speech
Mindy Kaling delivered multiple burns to Donald Trump during her Dartmouth commencement speech in June, along with some sage advice to deal with “graduating into a world where it s