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Angela Bassett preaches about the power of purpose for epic Black Girls Rock speech

Angela Bassett thegrio.comAngela Bassett thegrio.comNEW YORK, NY - MAY 14: Angela Bassett attends the 2018 Fox Network Upfront at Wollman Rink, Central Park on May 14, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)

In all her fabulousness, ageless actress Angela Bassett stood on the Black Girls Rock stage and accepted the Icon Award and served up a heartfelt lesson and powerful speech about what it means to walk in your purpose.

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On Sunday, BET aired the BGR ceremony, created by DJ Beverly Bond, and gives voice to the excellence Black women share with the world across the disciplines of music, entertainment, education and more.

Bassett was the recipient of the Icon Award, and shared the ups and especially the downs she experienced despite attaining critical acclaim for tackling roles like playing Tina Turner in What’s Love Got to Do With It. Still, Bassett said her phone stopped ringing and she had to dig deep and walk in her purpose. Through it all she said she maintained her integrity and refused to compromise on that.

“My purpose as a Black woman, as an actress, has always been to portray excellence on the screen, to be proud, unapologetic and without regret,” the Black Panther  actress said.

“It hasn’t always been easy, and there have been tough times, days when the phone didn’t ring, even after ‘What’s Love Got to Do With It.’ As well as moments of uncertainty and doubt,” she said. “But what women like my mother, Betty Jane, and my Aunt Golden taught me was that there will be times when you seem to face insurmountable obstacles but that’s when you dig deep into your soul with confidence and fortitude.”

“We have much work to do and, together, we are unstoppable,” she said. “Always remember that our voices, the very power that we hold individually, and all of us collectively, it does matter. Now is not the time to be silent. Find your purpose, pursue it relentlessly, passionately and loudly. Be persistent and win.”

.@ImAngelaBassett gives her acceptance speech at #BlackGirlsRock! pic.twitter.com/MeTeY7cPnA

— BET (@BET) September 9, 2019

Basset, who was introduced by Oscar-winning actress Regina King, gave thanks to her family for “giving me the opportunity and the space to be a Black girl who rocks.”

She also gave a nod to Bond, BET and trailblazing women in history, Rosa Parks, Betty Shabazz, Coretta Scott King and yes, Tina Turner. 

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Bassett then took it there when she preached about the nasty rhetoric, typical of Trump and white supremacists, of being told to go back to where you came from.

“So when you’re told you’re not good enough, you tell them, not only am I good enough, I’m more than good enough,” she said. “When they say send her back home, you tell them I am home. I am the foundation of what you call home. When they tell you that you’re angry or nasty, you tell them that they’re mistaken. This is me. This is me being resolute and standing firmly in my truth. And when they say you’re not beautiful, you tell them that you are the descendant of royalty.”

“We have much work to do and, together, we are unstoppable,” she said. “Always remember that our voices, the very power that we hold individually, and all of us collectively, it does matter. Now is not the time to be silent. Find your purpose, pursue it relentlessly, passionately and loudly. Be persistent and win.”

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https://thegrio.com/2019/09/09/angela-bassett-preaches-about-the-power-of-purpose-for-epic-black-girls-rock-speech/

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