Earlier this summer, Meryl Streep put together 535 parcels to send to all 535 members of the US congress. Each parcel contained a personally written letter by Streep, and a copy of the book ‘Equal Means Equal’ by Jessica Neuwirth, president of the E.R.A. (Equal Rights Amendment) Coalition.
Last weekend, she revealed the response she had received from the members of Congress and my, is it disappointing. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Streep told the audience at the Telluride Film Festival, where her film ‘Suffragette’ was screened, that her efforts were virtually ignored.
‘I sent them each a book called ‘Equal Means Equal’ by Jessica Neuwirth,’ she said, with disappointment thickening her voice (we assume). ‘It’s about the revival of the attempt to get an E.R.A. that would codify in law that you can’t discriminate against women. I got five answers.’
The gall! How could they ignore the force of nature that is Meryl Streep? However, rather than dwell on the incredibly lacklustre response, Streep used her time on the panel speaking about her own experiences with inequality. She said her feminist beliefs were inspired by her experiences as a child, when she heard her mother asking her father for money.
‘I remember those conversations, hearing them upstairs, the back and forth,’ she said. ‘I remember thinking, ‘I will never ask anybody for money. I will have my own money’.’
‘Suffragette’ is based on a screenplay by Abi Morgan, who also wrote 'Shame and The Iron Lady', and stars Carey Mulligan, Helena Bonham Carter, Romola Garai, Anne-Marie Duff, Natalie Press, Ben Whishaw and Brendan Gleeson. The film will be released nationwide on October 12th.