I don’t know whose idea this was, but I appreciate her.
The first writer to sit in Jimmy’s chair took a deep breath before saying,
“Thank you, Hillary Clinton, for being the first female presidential candidate nominated by a major party. And also the first female senator of New York. And also the first First Lady to transcend First Ladyhood to become Secretary of State. I guess what I’m trying to say is, thank you Hillary Clinton, for being the Hillary Clinton of American politics.”
Most of the other writers also took deep breaths before they dramatically raised their pens into the air and brought them down onto the thank you note. Some were shaky and some gave a nervous smile. Because on network television, these women were able to sit inches from Hillary Clinton, for whom they might have shed tears over or marched in honor of, and thank her.
They were able to publicly thank the woman they watched concede the election as she addressed young girls and spoke with stability despite tragedy, emotion, and exhaustion, things these women felt that day, too.
And for The Tonight Show and Jimmy to give these women the space to do that was incredibly important and for me, emotional.
But things didn’t peak until Jimmy brought Miley Cyrus on stage. Miley said,
“Thank you, Hil-”
And choked up. But she finished,
“Thank you, Hillary, for being a constant beacon of strength, hope, and determination for me and millions of other young women. You’ve been a role model and an inspiration and a voice of reason in uncertain times. I could go on and on, but I’d like to get right to the point: Can I give you a hug?”
I mean if she hadn’t have asked, Hillary would have given her one anyway. The girl had multiple tear streaks down her face.
Watching Miley read her note while trying to keep from crying was emotional for so many reasons. One: The Last Song proved that it is sad to watch Miley Cyrus cry. Two: Miley, openly pansexual, has advocated for LGBTQ rights for so long, and she pours her heart into it with her organization Happy Hippie. And she was thanking someone who keeps the hopes of LGBTQ Americans alive.
Last night, eight women had the opportunity to do something that millions of other women wish they could (although several have gotten lucky by random encounters with Hillary in the woods.)
It was a diverse group, a talented group, a group that works in the media industry, an area that was targeted for Hillary’s loss. But these women had the chance to forget all that, as well as the “snowflake” label thrown in their faces, and express their gratitude with humor.
It was a great, culturally profound moment for late night television.