12 must-see Oscar moments that didn’t center on straight white men.

I’m not crying. You’re crying.

The 90th Academy Awards ceremony was a glamorous, star-studded affair full of white dudes.

However, the winds of change are shifting. Its becoming abundantly clear the Academy, the film industry, and the country will no longer solely look to straight, cisgender, white men to lead the way. And that’s awesome.

Here are 12 standout moments from last nights Academy Awards that give me hope for a brighter, more diverse and inclusive future.


1. Jordan Peele won Best Original Screenplay for his horror masterpiece “Get Out.”

Hes the first black screenwriter to win the award. Yeah, first.

“I want to dedicate this to everyone who let me raise my voice,” he said in his acceptance speech.

2. Before presenting a montage of clips from war films, Cherokee actor and veteran Wes Studi addressed the audience in Cherokee language.

3. The award for Best Original Song went to “Remember Me,” from “Coco,” written by husband and wife duo Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez.

With this being his second Academy Award win, Robert Lopez, a Filipino-American, is now the first person to ever win at least two Grammys, Emmys, Tonys, and Oscars — or as the kids say, the “Double EGOT.”

The couple accepts their Oscar for Best Original Song.  Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images.

4. “Coco” also took home the award for Best Animated Feature Film, and the acceptance speech was heartwarming.

Producer Darla K. Anderson thanked her wife and co-director Adrian Molina thanked his husband, which is always awesome to see on national TV.

And co-director Lee Unkrich took a minute to stress the importance of representation in film:

“With ‘Coco’ we tried to take a step forward toward a world where all children can grow up seeing characters in movies that look and talk and live like they do. Marginalized people deserve to feel like they belong. Representation matters.”

Adrian Molina, Lee Unkrich and Darla K. Anderson. Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images.

5. James Ivory took home his first Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for “Call Me By Your Name.”

Ivory is openly gay, and at 89 years old, he’s now the oldest person to win an Oscar. He also wore the film’s star, Timothée Chalamet, on his shirt. Your fave could never.

6. “The Silent Child,” which tells the story of a deaf child who learns to communicate, won for Best Live Action Short Film.

The film’s writer and co-star, Rachel Shenton, promised Maisie Sly, the film’s 6-year-old deaf actress, that she would sign her acceptance speech if they won. Shenton fulfilled the promise, using British Sign Language (albeit slightly nervously) to accept the award.

7. Academy Award winner Lupita Nyong’o and nominee Kumail Nanjiani — immigrants from Kenya and Pakistan, respectively — showed their support for DREAMers.

“Like everyone in this room and everyone watching at home, we are dreamers. We grew up dreaming of one day working in the movies. Dreams are the foundation of Hollywood, and dreams are the foundation of America,” Nyong’o said.

GIF via The Academy Awards.

8. In the performance for their nominated song “Stand Up for Something” from the film “Marshall,” Andra Day and Common invited activists to join them on stage.

Common and Day personally invited each activist to participate in the performance. Guests on-stage included Bana Alabed (author and Syrian refugee), José Andrés (ThinkFoodGroup), Alice Brown Otter (Standing Rock Youth Council), Tarana Burke (Me Too), Patrisse Cullors (Black Lives Matter), Nicole Hockley (Sandy Hook Promise), Dolores Huerta (Dolores Huerta Foundation and the United Farm Workers of America), Janet Mock (#GirlsLikeUs), Cecile Richards (Planned Parenthood Action Fund), and Bryan Stevenson (Equal Justice Initiative).

From left: Cecile Richards, Nicole Hockley, Janet Mock, Tarana Burke, Bryan Stevenson, Common, Jose Andres, Bana Alabed, Andra Day, Patrisse Cullors, Dolores Huerta and Alice Brown Otter attend the Academy Awards. Photo by Matt Sayles/A.M.P.A.S via Getty Images.

9. Guadalajara, Mexico, native Guillermo del Toro took home his first Academy Award for Best Director for “The Shape of Water.”

The film later went on to win Best Picture. And del Toro checked the envelope just to be sure. (Can you blame him after last year?)

10. Daniela Vega, star of Best Foreign Language Film, “A Fantastic Woman,” became the Oscars’ first transgender presenter.

Vega introduced singer/songwriter Sufjan Stevens to the stage to perform his nominated song, “Mystery of Love" from “Call Me By Your Name.”

11. Three of Harvey Weinstein’s accusers, actresses Ashley Judd, Annabella Sciorra, and Salma Hayek, delivered a moving speech about women reclaiming their time and space in the industry.

12. And I’d be remiss not to mention Frances McDormand, who won Best Actress for her role in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.”

Not only did McDormand have every single woman nominee in the room stand up and be recognized, she also taught all of us a very important phrase — inclusion rider.

Inclusion riders can cover not just the casting but the crew as well, opening up opportunities for marginalized people in all areas of the industry. It’s truly using your privilege and power for good. Brava!

So, yes, the Academy Awards were a glamorous, star-studded affair full of white dudes — but they won’t be for long.

Change is coming quicker and more aggressively than ever before. And it’s about time.

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On an old episode of "The Oprah Winfrey Show" in July 1992, Oprah put her audience through a social experiment that puts racism in a new light. Despite being nearly two decades old, it's as relevant today as ever.

She split the audience members into two groups based on their eye color. Those with brown eyes were given preferential treatment by getting to cut the line and given refreshments while they waited to be seated. Those with blue eyes were made to put on a green collar and wait in a crowd for two hours.

Staff were instructed to be extra polite to brown-eyed people and to discriminate against blue-eyed people. Her guest for that day's show was diversity expert Jane Elliott, who helped set up the experiment and played along, explaining that brown-eyed people were smarter than blue-eyed people.

Watch the video to see how this experiment plays out.

Oprah's Social Experiment on Her Audience www.youtube.com

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Cadbury has removed the words from its Dairy Milk chocolate bars in the U.K. to draw attention to a serious issue, senior loneliness.

On September 4, Cadbury released the limited-edition candy bars in supermarkets and for every one sold, the candy giant will donate 30p (37 cents) to Age UK, an organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for the elderly.

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Young people today are facing what seems to be greater exposure to complex issues like mental health, bullying, and youth violence. As a result, teachers are required to be well-versed in far more than school curriculum to ensure students are prepared to face the world inside and outside of the classroom. Acting as more than teachers, but also mentors, counselors, and cheerleaders, they must be equipped with practical and relevant resources to help their students navigate some of the more complicated social issues – though access to such tools isn't always guaranteed.

Take Dr. Jackie Sanderlin, for example, who's worked in the education system for over 25 years, and as a teacher for seven. Entering the profession, she didn't anticipate how much influence a student's home life could affect her classroom, including "students who lived in foster homes" and "lacked parental support."

Dr. Jackie Sanderlin, who's worked in the education system for over 25 years.

Valerie Anglemyer, a middle school teacher with more than 13 years of experience, says it can be difficult to create engaging course work that's applicable to the challenges students face. "I think that sometimes, teachers don't know where to begin. Teachers are always looking for ways to make learning in their classrooms more relevant."

So what resources do teachers turn to in an increasingly fractured world? "Joining a professional learning network that supports and challenges thinking is one of the most impactful things that a teacher can do to support their own learning," Anglemyer says.

Valerie Anglemyer, a middle school teacher with more than 13 years of experience.

A new program for teachers that offers this network along with other resources is the WE Teachers Program, an initiative developed by Walgreens in partnership with ME to WE and Mental Health America. WE Teachers provides tools and resources, at no cost to teachers, looking for guidance around the social issues related to poverty, youth violence, mental health, bullying, and diversity and inclusion. Through online modules and trainings as well as a digital community, these resources help them address the critical issues their students face.

Jessica Mauritzen, a high school Spanish teacher, credits a network of support for providing her with new opportunities to enrich the learning experience for her students. "This past year was a year of awakening for me and through support… I realized that I was able to teach in a way that built up our community, our school, and our students, and supported them to become young leaders," she says.

With the new WE Teachers program, teachers can learn to identify the tough issues affecting their students, secure the tools needed to address them in a supportive manner, and help students become more socially-conscious, compassionate, and engaged citizens.

It's a potentially life-saving experience for students, and in turn, "a great gift for teachers," says Dr. Sanderlin.

"I wish I had the WE Teachers program when I was a teacher because it provides the online training and resources teachers need to begin to grapple with these critical social issues that plague our students every day," she adds.

In addition to the WE Teachers curriculum, the program features a WE Teachers Award to honor educators who go above and beyond in their classrooms. At least 500 teachers will be recognized and each will receive a $500 Walgreens gift card, which is the average amount teachers spend out-of-pocket on supplies annually. Teachers can be nominated or apply themselves. To learn more about the awards and how to nominate an amazing teacher, or sign up for access to the teacher resources available through WE Teachers, visit walgreens.com/metowe.

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