Superstar and Billboard Icon Award recipient Janet Jackson made her stance on the MeToo movement clear during her acceptance speech at the awards show Sunday night, and thanked God for her artistic career. “I believe that, for all of our challenges, we live at a glorious moment in history,” she began, after performing her 1986 hit “Nasty” and 1993 song “Throb.” “It’s a moment that, at long last, women have made it clear that we will no longer be controlled, manipulated, or abused. I stand with those women and with those men equally outraged by discrimination, who support us in heart and mind.” She continued with a message about faith. “My prayer is that, weary of such noise, we will turn back to the source of all calmness, that source is God. Everything we lack, God has in abundance: compassion, sensitivity, patience and boundless love. Again I want to thank all of you for this honor and I thank God for giving me the precious energy that lets me live my life as an artist who every day seeks to expend my capacity to love." In the audience various family members of Janet were present such as her mother Mrs Katherine Jackson, sister Rebbie Jackson, nephews Austin Brown and Prince Jackson and niece Yashi Brown.
Janet is the first black woman to receive the Icon Award, as surprise presenter Bruno Mars pointed out in his introduction. “The name ‘Jackson’ represents artistic genius and iconic performance,” said Mars of the legendary superstar. “The Jacksons are music royalty and the first family of entertainment. She is an activist. She’s a humanitarian. She’s a powerful woman.”