UPDATED: PARK CITY — Actress Maria Bello fired up the crowd marching in opposition of Donald Trump and in favor of a host of causes, with one of the fieriest speeches during the women’s march and rally at the Sundance Film Festival on Saturday morning.
Her speech began with: “Hello, all you p—!” and concluded with an invocation of “p—- power.”
The actress known for TV’s “Goliath” and films like “Abduction” told the crowd gathered in a light snow that she had been so despondent since Trump’s election that “I just got out of bed for the first time in 74 days.” But she said she had been “roused from my deep depression” by Meryl Streep’s speech at the Golden Globe awards and by the call for entertainment industry leaders to rally in this mountain resort town.
“Yesterday, I don’t know about you, but I wept at the inauguration. And then I got angry,” Bello said, to shouts of approval. “And I realized that I stayed in bed too long. And I have never been that girl.” She said she harkened back to her days 30 years ago marching for abortion rights in Philadelphia. Bello said that, then, “my Jersey/Philly voice took over,” and she resolved: “If someone punches you in the face, punch them back harder and maybe not with your fists.”
She said she was referring to issues like the loss of health care coverage or women’s reproductive rights, which required the opposition to “punch them back harder with a sense of compassion and justice and your rallying and your words.”
“When they denigrating entire religions and sexes and races and beliefs and trying to tell us who we are allowed to become,” Bello said, “punch them back by speaking truth to power.” The crowd roared for each of Bello’s admonitions.
The 49-year-old actress concluded by saying that women’s power was deep and resilient, and even the source of life. “So when they try to punch you by grabbing your pussy, punch them back harder with your pussy power,” Bello declared. She said activists had to know they had the strength to do it. Her final call to action: “Light a match, witches!”