On Jan. 3, Surviving R. Kelly made its TV debut, where multiple women — including the singer’s ex-wife Andrea Kelly — shared their deeply personal stories about their time with the music star, where he allegedly abused multiple underage African American girls. Many celebrities recently came forward and explained that they do not support R.Kelly, however, there was a significant one that was missing: Lady Gaga. Now, the “Born This Way” singer is speaking up and wants everyone to know that she “stands behind anyone who has ever been the victim of sexual assault or violence.”
The blonde beauty, 32, took to Instagram on Jan. 9. to explain in further detail why she chose to work with R. Kelly in 2013. “I stand behind these women 1000%, believe them, know they are suffering and in pain, and feel strongly that their voices should be heard and taken seriously,” she wrote. “What I am hearing about the allegations against R. Kelly is absolutely horrifying and indefensible. As a victim of sexual assault myself, I made both the song and video at a dark time in my life. My intention was to create something extremely defiant and provocative because I was angry and still hadn’t processed the trauma that had occurred in my own life. The song is called ‘Do What U Want (With My Body).’ I think it’s clear how explicitly twisted my thinking was at the time.”
She continued, “If I could go back and have a talk with my younger self, I’d tell her to go through the therapy I have since then, so that I could understand the confused post-traumatic state that I was in — or if therapy was not available to me or anyone in my situation — to seek help, and speak as openly and honestly as possible about what we’ve been through.”
The Grammy winner realized that while she didn’t speak up then, she is speaking up now and wants to see change happen in the entertainment industry. “I can’t go back, but I can go forward and continue to support women, men, and people of sexual assault. I have demonstrated my stance on this issue and others many times throughout my career. I share this not to make excuses for myself, but to explain,” she confessed.
“’Til it happens to you, you don’t know how it feels. But I do know how I feel now. I intend to remove this song off of iTunes and other streaming platforms and will not be working with him again. I’m sorry, both for my poor judgment when I was young, and for not speaking out sooner. I love you,” she finished the note.
Dream Hampton, who executive produced the Lifetime TV series, asked Lady Gaga and other artists like Celine Dion and Jay-Z, who had worked with R. Kelly previously, to come forward but said that “most people just don’t want to touch it.”
During an interview on SiriusXM, Dream wished that the A Star Is Born actress would have spoken out sooner, as she had many questions for her. “I wanted to know how Lady Gaga could be on SNL with him as someone who advocates for domestic abuse survivors and was, you know, had this ridiculous performance with him on SNL,” she said.
Well, better late than never. We applaud your bravery, Gaga.
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