When Nico Tortorella was invited to be a keynote speaker at Her Conference, he asked himself “Why me? I am not a traditional “her.” Even Tortorella’s partner, Bethany Meyers initial reaction was, “how dare the Her Conference invite you to speak, let alone keynote.” Despite the hesitance from his closest support system, Tortorella accepted the invite.
Since Millennials are considered to be the most diverse, progressive and open-minded generation, this was the perfect audience for Tortorella to address. Tortorella encouraged the women in the audience to use their voice and influence to make a positive difference in the world. “If you have a body that is deemed more socially acceptable than others, stand up for the ones in need. If you are white, scream against systemic racism. If you are an American citizen, stand up for undocumented people. Stand up for the indigenous, the poor, the Black, the Trans, the you, the me, the us,” incited Tortorella.
Tortorella recognized and supported women’s empowerment and gender inequality, by stating, “It is no secret that the patriarchy, the brute force of masculine energy, is the dominant force on this planet today. But that hasn’t always been the case. Thousands of years ago, the feminine reigned supreme. However, the feminine spirit is rising again.”
Tortorella believes there should be a better way of addressing discrimination faced by women without dividing us into two opposing groups. Nico believes the binary is the reason why we’re so divided. Tortorella’s encouraged the audience “not [to]fight this issue, but correct the imbalance, the sooner we will have some love based social order in this world.” Tortorella even read the lyrics to the Whitney Houston song “I’m Every Woman” by interchanging woman with human.
“Be every human. Love every human. See every human. Respect every human. My call to action is this: As much as we are aware of the victim in all of us, we must also acknowledge the ways we are complicit. Just because you are being strangled doesn’t mean your hands aren’t wrapped around someone else’s neck,” pleaded Tortorella.