As fans know, Madonna is a huge supporter of the LGBTQ community! That being said, during her acceptance speech after receiving the Advocate for Change Award at the GLAAD Media Awards, the superstar got emotional talking about equal rights.
She started by explaining ‘Why have I always fought for change? That is a hard question. It is like trying to explain the importance of reading or need to love. Growing up I felt like an outsider, like I did not fit in. It was not because I did not shave under my armpits, I just did not fit in, OK.’
Madonna went on to recall her very first close relationship with a gay person and how that changed her life.
He ‘was named Christopher Flynn – my ballet teacher in high school and he was the very first person that believed in me, that made me feel special as a dancer, artist and human being. I know this sounds superficial, but he was the first man to tell me that I was beautiful.’’
One night, Flynn took her to a gay club for the first time ever and that is when her eyes were opened like never before!
Seeing men kissing, women cross-dressing, guys rocking more feminine clothing and just having the time of their lives made Madonna feel like it was Okay to be different and free.
She realized she was not a ‘freak’ and alone and it gave her a lot of hope.
Flynn was also the person who encouraged her to move to New York and pursue her dreams.
At the time she arrived in 1977, it had a lot to offer, including an artistic spirit and diversity but unfortunately, there was also the AIDS epidemic.
Her friends started losing their lives to it, one by one.
Madonna, teary-eyed, explained that ‘After I lost my best friend and roommate Martin Burgoyne and then Keith Haring – happy birthday Keith – I decided to take up the bull horn and really fight back.’
The award is definitely very special to her since it means recognition for the many years and work she’s put into the cause.