Lady Gaga's latest video addresses campus rape
“Activist” might not be the first thing you think of when you think “Lady Gaga.” That said, being an activist is a significant part of her identity. Looking specifically at her work this past year, the superstar has been hugely committed to ending sexual assault on college campuses.
In June Lady Gaga cowrote an open letter for Billboard with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, calling for legislation that would make college campuses safer for all students.
“Today, too many college students experience sexual assault, too few of the assailants are prosecuted, and too often the survivors lack the resources they need to recover,” Gaga and Cuomo explain in their letter. “Making a bad situation worse, college officials sometimes fear negative publicity against their school if assaults are reported to the police,” they say. “Instead of involving law enforcement, these cases are often handled as campus disciplinary issues and many offenders avoid meaningful consequences.”
In her latest endeavor to quell sexual assault, Gaga cowrote, with famous songwriter Diane Warren, a chilling song about sexual violence, “Til It Happens To You.” The song is featured in this year’s powerful and controversial documentary about campus rape, The Hunting Ground.
Now, Gaga has dropped the music video for “Til It Happens To You” and the video absolutely lives up to the chilling promise of the song.
It begins with a white-writing warning: “The following contains graphic content that may be emotionally unsettling but reflects the reality of what is happening daily on college campuses.”
Directed by Catherine Hardwicke of Thirteen and Twilight fame, the video depicts black and white scenes of rape in recognizable college locations (a dorm room, a house party), and then goes on to show what the aftermath of the experience is like for the survivors (recognizable faces include Hardwicke’s go-to girl Nikki Reed and one of our new favorite actresses from this summer’s Dope Kiersey Clemons). Check out the video below:
Note: A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the song are going to organizations that support survivors of sexual assault.
We are so glad that Lady Gaga is using her powerful platform to promote awareness, support survivors, and take a stand against sexual violence.
[Image via YouTube]