Award shows have been subject to politics and out of place speeches damn near since their inception, Meryl Streep's latest attempt notwithstanding. But how long has this been going on? Well...
Dudley Nichols snubbed the Oscars in 1935
Nichols was a brilliant writer in the 1930s who won for his work on the film The Informer. Not only did he not show up for the award, he became the very first person who declined it. His reason was an ongoing writer's strike.
Marlon Brando famously fights for Indigenous People
When Marlon Brando won in 1973 for The Godfather, fans and fellow film makers alike were shocked when he refused the award. The actor sent fellow actress Sacheen Littlefeather to express his refusal, which was in protest of the portrayal of indigenous people in film.
Vanessa Redgrave shocks Hollywood with Zionist speech
Actress Vanessa Redgrave was already in hot water over what appeared to be conflicting political ideologies. She had won an Oscar for her role as a Jewish woman in the film Julia, but had also produced a film titled The Palestinian, in which she backed a Palestinian homeland. She shocked award show audiences when she pointedly called out the Jewish groups who were protesting against her as "Zionist hoodlums," and effectively destroyed any semblance of a career in one fell swoop.
Richard Gere is banned from the Oscars after talking about Tibet
Gere was intended to present an award at the 1993 Oscars, but instead used the moment to discuss Tibet. The move earned him a 20 year ban from the award show. He returned to the awards in 2003.
Michael Moore shames President George Bush
Sean Penn advocates for gay rights
After winning for the film Milk, in which he portrayed gay politician Harvey Milk, Sean Penn took the time to use his speech to advocate for gay rights.
Leonardo DiCaprio uses his speech for the fight against global warming
DiCaprio won a much sought-after Oscar in 2016, and even though this is a moment he's been waiting for, for several years, he didn't even give it a second thought when it came to the fight against global warming. DiCaprio talked about how the crew had to travel to the southernmost point of South America just to find snow.
Meryl Streep criticizes Donald Trump
The latest and among the most controversial only because of the response, Meryl Streep criticized President Donald Trump, who immediately tweeted back in response that she was "...a Hillary flunky who lost big."
Streep was not the first, she will not be the last, but her words are as important as ever.