Did Angelina Jolie's Emotional Speech Include A Dig At Brad Pitt?

She may be best known as an actor, but these days Angelina Jolie has been far busier in her work as an activist than on screen. One of the many causes that's near and dear to her heart is domestic violence, which she showed quite clearly in her emotional interview with NBC News on March 16 while talking about the Violence Against Women Act. Jolie has been fiercely lobbying for the legislation President Joe Biden reauthorized on March 16, which aims to protect survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking, according to CNN.

In her interview, Jolie talked about the "broken" system in the United States and said she doesn't think the problems of domestic and child abuse get as much recognition as they should. She also made what could be construed as oblique references to ex-husband Brad Pitt, whom she alleged was abusive toward their children. In a 2021 interview with the The Guardian, Jolie revealed she feared for the safety of her whole family while married to Pitt, saying, "It took a lot for me to be in a position where I felt I had to separate from the father of my children." An FBI investigation cleared Pitt of abuse allegations in 2016. All of which to say, Jolie knows the system that she's calling to be reformed.

Angelina Jolie references her own experience

In her March 16 interview with NBC News, Angelina Jolie seemingly opened up about her experiences with the criminal justice system. "I think once you're exposed to this system, whoever you are, once you're exposed to it and you realize how unbelievably broken this system is, you have to do something to improve it," she shared. As what many perceived as Jolie referencing the investigation into her ex-husband Brad Pitt's alleged abuse, she continued, "And my focus for the last few years has been to help my family and ... to focus on helping change laws to protect other families and other women and focus on their stories." 

While Pitt has denied the accusations and independent investigations have cleared the actor of wrongdoing, it certainly sounds like Jolie may have felt there was a miscarriage of justice in her family. We can't make a judgment on what's true and what's not, but we can be sure that once Jolie sets out on behalf of a cause, she doesn't stop. For example, Jolie's forceful support of the Violence Against Women Act brought her before Congress in a call to action in February. "Standing here, at the center of our nation's power, I can think only of everyone who's been made to feel powerless by their abusers [and] by a system that fails to protect them," she said in her speech, per Variety. Jolie has made it clear her mission, in her personal life or otherwise, is justice.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.