Lady Gaga speaks out at massive Europride event in Rome: Can she meaningfully affect gay rights? -- VIDEO

lady_gaga_rome

Thousands of Little Roman Monsters put their paws up on Saturday night. That’s because Lady Gaga performed at Europride, the annual, pan-European gay pride event held this year in the Italian capital.

For Gaga, who has dedicated herself to gay rights on stage and off, Europride became an especially personal affair. In a nearly twenty-minute speech she gave before performing heartfelt acoustic renderings of “Born This Way” and “The Edge of Glory,” she not only proudly identified her Italian heritage, but did something highly unusual for Gaga: in front of thousands at the ancient Circus Maximus she called herself by her birth name, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta.

Check out the video of her speech and her performance here:

Even though sporting a teal-colored bob and clad in a tent-like Gianni Versace gown, she clearly wanted to drop some of her masquerade and speak from the heart, as she has lately on The View and elsewhere, opening up about her own history of bullying in high school.

For those with any lingering doubt over her priorities, she declared, “It has become clear to me that my greater mission is to be part of the joyous mobilization of the LGBT community worldwide.”

Indeed, Europride is just the latest in a string of gay-rights endeavors in which she’s participated: In the past, she’s donated proceeds from her Monster Ball tour to charities benefiting homeless gay teenagers. Last September, she arrived at the MTV Video Music Awards escorted by former soldiers kicked out of the U.S. Military because of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Policy.” She then later exchanged a series of tweets with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on ending DADT and spoke at a rally in Maine.

During her speech she criticized the U.S. government’s fuzzy attitude toward gay rights, citing the “[negative] effect that the denial of gay marriage has on real families worldwide.” She also pinpointed Russia, Poland, Lithuania, Hungary, and Lebanon as other offenders. Her Lebanon shout-out may have been a covert reference to the Middle Eastern nation’s General Secretary Department recently impounding shipments of her new No. 1 album, Born This Way, for being “offensive to Christianity” and in “bad taste.” To those countries, she said “For some governments gay rights are not a political or social priority, and the principles of non-discrimination are ambiguous.”

Officials in Rome feared that Gaga would criticized Pope Benedict and the Vatican for their stance against homosexuality. However, she was careful to avoid any direct mention of the Catholic Church in her speech.

Only in the long run will we know whether her pop-and-platitudes-driven advocacy can have a demonstrable effect. But, for now, it’s the effort that’s admirable.

Considering the apathy about gay rights–or any particular issue, for that matter–that’s commonplace among most other stars of comparable wattage, her sincerity is refreshing. What think you, Music Mixers? Can Gaga meaningfully affect the gay rights movement?

The Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix

Read more from EW.com:
You’re Lebanese! You’re…Censored: Lady Gaga’s ‘Born This Way’ banned in Lebanon
Lady Gaga visits ‘The View,’ talks plans to host ‘Saturday Night Live’
Lady Gaga at ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ rally in Maine: Watch her speech here

Comments (39 total) Add your comment
Page: 1 2
  • whatevs

    I don’t think any celebrity can meaningfully affect anything, to be honest. People in show business aren’t exactly respected for their intellect, and I’ve never known anyone to change their opinion based on what a celebrity thinks.

    I could be wrong, but that’s just how I see it.

    • Mike

      John Lennon and Bob Dylan were able to affect an entire generation. I don’t necessarily think Gaga is at that level yet, but she’s a powerful force and she’s on her way. I can see her career in activism growing.

  • PJ

    Lady Gaga leading the gay rights movement is a lot like a white person leading the NAACP.

    • Krissy

      Your comparison is soooo off. Gaga doesn’t just defend the LBGT community, she is A PART of it. Do you not know that the “B” stands for “bi-sexual”, and that is what Gaga is?

      • True Blue

        * Civil rights MOVEMENT, not activism.

    • True Blue

      She’s bisexual, so she’s also fighting for herself as well as others. But even if she were straight, why should that preclude her from standing up for the LGBT community? And as for your analogy of a white person leading the NAACP, you do know that there were white people who were actually involved in the civil rights activism, right? You shouldn’t need to be the affected minority to fight for the rights of said minority. As Martin Luther King said, injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

  • Alex

    “She then later exchanged a series of tweets with then Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on ending DADT and spoke at a rally in Maine.”

    Um, research? Harry Reid is STILL the Senate Majority Leader.

    • Ted Bundy

      The would be true if the Democrats were still the majority. Research? How about commonsense.

      • Melissa

        Democrats are STILL the majority in the Senate, fool!

      • Mike

        Republicans are only in the majority in the House of Reps. Harry Reid is still the Senate Majority Leader because Dems still control the Senate and the White House.

    • Ted Bundy

      I hate this whole “gay rights” thing. Gays have the same rights as everyone else. They have the right to get married to someone of the opposite gender because that’s what marriage. They want the privilege to marry someone outside the definition, which is not a right. Just like the right to kill a fetus is as much a right as any other murder. And to the feminists out their, its not your body, it’s the baby’s! Unfortunately a minority with a big mouth will ruin America’s traditional morality and lead to our decline. I hope the Middle East’s economy improved by then.

      • Dan

        First of all, your name is Ted Bundy on here which is disturbing in itself. Also, you are the very definition and prime example of what is wrong with people in this world today!

      • True Blue

        It’s pretty clear that your mother should’ve aborted you. Or at the very least, swallowed you.

      • Mike

        I’m sorry lead to our decline? What do you call it when heterosexual politicians are caught in sex scandals? Or how about when a heterosexual couple gets divorced?

  • Sally

    Criticizing the Catholic Church is too easy of a target, and no longer considered taboo. Once she starts calling out Islam, the religion that murders homosexuals, I will be impressed. You might not be able to get married if you’re gay in Western countries, but at least your life is protected under he law. A gay blogger in Syria was just abducted by its monstrous government. Has she said anything about that yet?

    • Well…

      When has she criticized the Catholic Church? I know she has used Catholic stories as a metaphor… is that not allowed? But I honestly hate this new call against Muslim’s when Catholic/Christian hate is questioned. And by the way… the gay blogger in Syria turned out to be a straight white dude from the US.

    • Mike

      Hate is hate, period. Christian hate is just as powerful and strong as Muslim hate, and there are places in the world where Christianity does not resemble modern day Christianity the United States enjoys.

      • Becie

        Just because someone disagrees with the practice of homosexuality, which is abnormal and has been for as long as men have been on earth, is no reason to label them as “haters.” The homosexuals on this site are the ones using vituperative speech against those who express the traditional view or support Christianity, especially the Catholic Church.

  • Mandy

    She gets people talking, which is a big step for the movement. Her support is unwavering, unlike many celebrities who speak up when it is popular or they need some press.

  • Ted Bundy

    I hate this whole “gay rights” thing. Gays have the same rights as everyone else. They have the right to get married to someone of the opposite gender because that’s what marriage. They want the privilege to marry someone outside the definition, which is not a right. Just like the right to kill a fetus is as much a right as any other murder. And to the feminists out their, its not your body, it’s the baby’s! Unfortunately a minority with a big mouth will ruin America’s traditional morality and lead to our decline. I hope the Middle East’s economy improved by then.

    • Well…

      Well if you were gay, you’d feel different. And we’ve heard the whole “you have the same rights as everyone else, you can marry someone from the opposite sex” before. It’s not really funny, and doesn’t make sense. It’s like me saying you HAVE to marry someone you’re not attracted to, aren’t interested in, and goes against everything you feel. Yeah you CAN but you don’t want to. And I would guess the “traditional morality” you speak of just happens to line up exactly the way you live your life. Good for you… now I want MY morality. Because you know, I like to decide things about my life MYSELF.

  • Fhranzen May Buyco

    The only one thing can say is: I like very much lady ga,she is superstar!

  • idviceroy

    @ Ted Bundy. Bottom line, it’s your narrow mindedness that’s the problem. I DON’T have the same rights b/c I happen to be gay, yet I my partners and I pay our mortgage on time, pay our bills on time, volunteer in our community to make it a better place FOR EVERYONE…yet we don’t enjoy the same benefits, i.e. TAX CREDITS that straight married couples get to enjoy b/c too many in the gov’t are narrowed minded about what it means to LOVE someone.
    As for Gaga, yes I love her, and NO, I didn’t ask her to be an advocate for our rights. But God BLESS her for doing so!

  • Daniel

    I do believe that some gay people are born strongly homosexually inclined. That they would be that way no matter what environment they were raised in or who their parents were.

    But I also believe that number is a lot smaller than the gay community is trying to get people to believe. They are trying to say that everyone who is gay was born that way. I’ve known many gay and bisexual individuals and most had indirect routes there.

    I don’t have a problem with people being homosexual. The only things I actually have a problem with is when it comes to sex is when it involves the unwilling or unconsensual, life threatening, when one is too impaired to make a conscious choice, a degree of incest (doing it with your second cousin shouldn’t count), animals, children or corpses. Other than that, there may be several things that disgust me, but it’s not my place to stick my nose in unless help is wanted and/or requested.

    What I don’t like is that the gay community is trying to force acceptance of everything they do down my throat. If I even try to question some of their statements, I am shouted down and called a homophobe. I remember I had a conversation with one person who was mortally offended when I said I had a problem with a person’s sexual preference without saying what it was, saying I had no right to judge. She shut up when I said he was a pedophile and sexual preference was children.

    • Mike

      When we are given the same rights as everyone else, we will stop trying to force for our acceptance. You don’t have to like us or even respect us, but if we are not treated equally we will always be heard.

      • susan

        This world is turning to(my rights.) When we turn from God, we follow our own desires of the flesh. God gave us the truth, he put it in our hearts. It’s there, we just choose to turn away. And that’s how loving our God is, we get to choose. He allows us that freedom. Sex with same sex is unnatural, and also causes many diseases and problems. Go and multiple God said. If you can’t have children this way, it is unnatural. But your desires say this is how I was born. And you get to hear all the pop stars singing and dancing and fornicating in their videos to persuade you this is the truth. Pedophiles, sexual molesters all desire to be with children. We’re they born that way? Are we going to have to accept this also? No one should be treated unfairly or negatively no matter what choices they make. I do not have to accept this because I believe what God teaches, not what i desire, but what God has said thru his word. It’s unclean and against the truth. I do pray for gays and lesbians and wish them God’s grace. For God wishes that no one perish, but all be saved.

    • Mike

      Also, your discussion of pedophilia is unwarranted and disrespectful, and implies that homosexuality and pedophilia go hand-in-hand. Most child rapists and people who molest children are not homosexuals, they are heterosexuals.

  • Mikester

    “Considering the apathy about gay rights–or any particular issue, for that matter–that’s commonplace among most other stars of comparable wattage, her sincerity is refreshing.”

    Other stars of comparable wattage? Name ONE…

  • Nemo

    I actually do think she can make a difference. Of course the politicians aren’t going to care about her making a speech, but you know what does impress them? Thousands of people chanting her name, and doing whatever she tells them to do. Most politicians can only dream of that. It’s real political power, and she has it.

    • Mike

      Agreed. No politician in our current political climate will ever have that kind of respect by “fans.”

  • Jose Calderone

    “I don’t think any celebrity can meaningfully affect anything”…Don’t you think Bob Dylan and John Lennon affected anything? Believe me, when Lady Gaga gives marching orders to her 10.5 million twitter followers, it affects something. Most of those people vote (or soon will). And politicians are paying attention.

  • Doc

    Extraordinary talent + unique charisma + inspiring message + resolute perseverance + millions of loyal fans wolrdwide (and growing) + globalized digital era = REVOLUTIONARY POWER. Can she affect gay rights? Let’s just say that I think if she ran for president herself one day, she might just sweep to victory. And I would be one of her proud voters.

  • frank

    What goes hand in hand is the fact that “i’ll do whatever i want to do whether it is morally right or not.” The fool has no delight in understanding but expressing his own heart. Look at these artists today, they are being idolized, for what, doing drugs, smoking marijuana which helps them to write their lyrics, sodomy videos and sexual content, vulgar language. Noo thank you.

  • tresorparis

    Youareamazing! This weblog is so great. I really hope a lot more people read this and get what you are saying, cause let me tell you, its critical stuff. I never would have thought about it this way unless I would run into your web site. Thanks for sharing it. I hope youve excellent achievement.

Page: 1 2
Add your comment
The rules: Keep it clean, and stay on the subject - or we may delete your comment. If you see inappropriate language, e-mail us. An asterisk (*) indicates a required field.

When you click on the "Post Comment" button above to submit your comments, you are indicating your acceptance of and are agreeing to the Terms of Service. You can also read our Privacy Policy.

Latest Videos in Music

Advertisement

TV Recaps

Powered by WordPress.com VIP