"We have made my ancestor an idol of white supremacy, racism and hate". Lee feels "obligated" to speak out against racism following the white supremacist rally and tragic violence that surrounded the planned removal of the Gen. "As a pastor, it is my moral duty to speak out against hate and racism, America's original sin".
Lee then introduced Susan Bro, the mother of Heather Hyer, the 32-year-old woman killed while protesting the far-right at Charlottesville just two weeks ago. He went on to praise Heather Heyer - the young woman killed in a terror attack earlier this month in Charlottesville, Virginia, allegedly perpetrated by a man believed to be a white supremacist - who, he said, "died fighting for her beliefs". Bro announced the launch of the Heather Hyer Foundation Against Racism and delivered a powerful statement on the legacy of her daughter's anti-racism campaigning.
On a more personal level of resistance, Pink, who won the Video Vanguard Award, shared a story of a recent exchange with her daughter, who told Pink that she felt she was the ugliest girl she knew, "I look like a boy with long hair", she told her mom.
"I want people to know Heather never marched alone", said Bro, "she was always joined by people from every race and every background in this country". "She was always joined by people of every race and every background in this country", Bro declared, adding: "In that spirit, MTV has made a decision to honor all six nominees", who were John Legend ("Surefire"), Lin-Manuel Miranda ("Immigrants"), Alessia Cara ("Scars to Your Beautiful"), Logic and Damian Lemar Hudson ("Black SpiderMan"), Shailene Woodley and Taboo ("Stand Up/Stand N Rock"), and Big Sean ("Light").
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Alessia Cara performed her body-positivity song "Scars to Your Beautiful". The Hamilton Mixtape and John Legend both took on the targeting of immigrants. "Logic celebrated diversity", Bro said. Taboo and Shailene Woodley rebelled against government exploitation.