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“Broad City’s” Ilana Glazer Wants Women to Raise Their Voices With Their Votes

Photo: Courtesy of Jason Frank Rothenberg

When Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson’s comedic web series made its way to TV, it was quickly labeled as “political.” At first, the then-twenty-something co-creators scratched their heads. Now Glazer is happily taking up that mantle. “I’ve become more pointed about using my platform in a constructive way that contributes to our society becoming more progressive,” she shares. “It’s of equal value as the comedy and being funny at this point.” And with election season around the corner, Glazer’s message at the moment is crystal clear: “Just know when and where and who to vote for,” she urges. “And tell your friends. That’s what young women can do to change the world right now.”

Along with Glennis Meagher and Ruby Anaya, Glazer recently helped launch The Generator, a social-media-focused platform that aims to humanize politics by encouraging people to share stories of how the government and policy impacts their lives. For The Generator’s live event series, Glazer has interviewed politicians and activists, and shares that her take away from that experience so far has been that “we should hope that our politicians are activists, not business people.” With corruption getting “slicker and sleeker and sneakier,” she notes, “It’s not just enough to go down the line voting for your party. You have to really look up these people and see if they are politicians for the people or if they’re politicians for themselves.”

Speaking up for women’s rights

Glazer speaks with excitement about the host of promising female political candidates running in the fall and shares her “passion” for Women’s March co-organizers Paola Mendoza and Sarah Sophie Flicker, who have been outspoken about protecting and expanding women’s rights. She also acknowledges that all parts of the country aren’t created equal in their access to birth control. “If you’re in a situation where you do not have access to birth control, I would say play and explore your sexuality in ways that won’t get you pregnant,” the actress and activist advises. “Birth control can also be education. Look up online how to avoid getting pregnant, and if you are pregnant and you need to get an abortion, find the way to get one without disrupting the rest of your life as much as possible.”

Glazer considers herself an artist first and foremost, but she’s increasingly viewing her art as opportunity to speak out for radical empathy and a more inclusive world. “I hope to keep educating myself and other people — young, old, male, female, nonbinary — so that we can use the system to our benefit,” Glazer declares. “I think the system is actually set up to keep the power structures in place, but the irony is that it was sold to the people as being for the people. I think that the people can like take the system back and make it work for them.”

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