Cyndi Lauper once again cemented herself as a women’s rights activist at the recent 2021 MTV VMAs. In a passionate speech, she called for equal pay and control over their bodies.
At the 2021 MTV Video Music Awards (VMA), Cyndi Lauper had the pleasure of addressing the crowd and the audience, putting women’s rights at the forefront.
She started by greeting all those in attendance and watching at home. The singer mentioned how she’d won a Moon Person trophy at the very first MTV VMAs in 1984, eliciting applause from the crowd.
Cyndi Lauper at the MTV Video Music Awards on September 12, 2021, at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York | Photo: Instagram/cyndilauper
Lauper confessed things were now different compared to those years. Referencing her famous song, the singer noted how girls still wanted to have fun; however, she showed her activist side, adding:
“But we also want to have funds. Equal pay. Control over our bodies! You know, fundamental rights."
Cyndi Lauper at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards at StaplesCenter on January 26, 2020, in Los Angeles, California | Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images
The star concluded her empowering speech, which had the audience screaming with support, by lifting one fist in protest. Her brief but powerful message was given at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
After that, she presented the Best Pop trophy to Justin Bieber, Daniel Caesar, and Giveon for the song "Peaches." Offstage she was interviewed by Entertainment Tonight, where she reflected on her activism.
Lauper explained how she’d worked hard to ensure that the video for her song, "Girls Just Want to Have Fun," was a representation of "all girls." She said that was an essential thing for her to capture.
She [Billie Eilish] noted how young women needed to be protected.
The iconic songstress recalled how that year she’d been nominated for seven awards but won none. However, she was glad to have been around and had the privilege of making performance art. The star also praised MTV for the legacy it had built for music since its inception 40 years ago.
Lauper was accompanied to the awards show by her son Declyn, 23, who walked the red carpet with her. The singer wore a black leather jacket with a sheer dress.
Declyn complemented her look in a matching grey shirt and pants. He accessorized with brown sunglasses and carried a funky character sling bag.
Lauper wasn’t the only celebrity to address women’s rights at the awards ceremony. While receiving her Video for Good trophy from Avril Lavigne for her song “Your Power,” Billie Eilish spoke about women’s rights. She noted how young women needed to be protected.
In turn, Lil Nas X’s performance of his singles “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” and “Industry Baby” were used to raise awareness for HIV.