Kerry Washington had a big night at the 44th Annual NAACP Image Awards Friday. Taking the stage to accept three awards, the talented actress spoke not only of the ABC drama "Scandal," but of equality and President Obama.
"I don't gravitate towards stories about perfect people in perfect situations because in real life, there is no such thing," Washington said accepting the President's Award Friday.
While Washington won Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture and Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series, her acceptance of the President's Award was most poignant.
"Since this is an award for public service, I want to say that at the Democratic convention, I expressed deep respect for our constitution and the rights of we the people to elect our leaders. On "Scandal" Olivia (Pope) robs her fellow Americans of that very right," said Washington.
As an entertainer that has put her celebrity and passion for change to good use via V-Day, a global movement to end violence against women, Washington went on to say that human beings are naturally flawed, unique and have a story to tell.
"Human beings are complicated, flawed and unique, but we all have a story to tell. Gone are the days where our characters can only look like someone else," said Washington. "Heroes look like all of us. We see ourselves in each others stories. We see who we are. We see who we want to be. Sometimes we see who we don't want to be. Through that, we have a greater understanding of ourselves and acceptance of each other."
Championing equality for all and referencing her work with President Barack Obama, Kerry Washington went on to say that all should be represented in works including film, television and literature.
"I consider it an honor to be an advocate for the arts and to serve on (President) Obama's committee for arts and humanities because just as we must ensure that we the people includes all Americans, regardless of race, class, gender and sexual orientation, we must also work to ensure that the stories we tell, the movies we produce, the television we produce, the theaters we stage, the novels we publish, are all inclusive in all those same ways," Washington shared.
Accepting the President's Award from Diahann Carroll, Washington closed her speech referencing those who blazed the trail before her.
"I stand here tonight on the shoulders of those who have blazed a path of art and activism. Harry Belafonte, I stand on your shoulders. I stand on your shoulders Diahann Carroll with gratitude," said Washington. "I receive this award with great humility and I hope that I may one day live up to the level of service, not for me, but for us and the next generation of storytellers."
Were you moved by Kerry Washington's acceptance speech?
The 44th Annual NAACP Image Awards aired Friday, Feb. 1 on NBC.