Madonna has spoken out in defence of the music video for her new song ‘God Control’, which portrays scenes of a mass shooting in a nightclub.
The music video has drawn comparison to the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, which saw 49 people killed and 53 injured, and survivors of the shooting have criticised Madonna for the video and the response to it.
“Appreciate the message but please remember that there are people behind the prop you’re using,” survivor Brandon Wolf said on Twitter.
Speaking to People, Madonna explained that she made this video to “draw attention to a crisis that needs to be addressed”.
“To me, this is the biggest problem in America right now,” the singer added. “I want to draw attention through my platform as an artist to a problem in America that is out of control, and is taking the lives of innocent people. I cannot take it anymore.”
When asked about her response to any criticism of the video, the singer said: “I would say this is what happens when people shoot. Understand that this is what happens. Guns kill.
“Seeing the reality, and the brutality of things makes you wake up. This is really happening. This is what it looks like. Does it make you feel bad? Good, ’cause then maybe you will do something about it.”
You can watch the video here – but note the clip does contain images of graphic violence.
The eight-minute long video, which contains scenes of people laying lifeless and covered in blood on the nightclub floor as well as someone opening fire with a machine gun, opens with a violence warning.
“The story you are about to see is very disturbing. It shows graphic scenes of gun violence. But it’s happening every day. And it has to stop,” the warning reads.
Madonna has also issued a call-to-action to support organisations fighting for gun control, writing: “This is your wake up call. Gun violence disproportionately affects children, teenagers and the marginalised in our communities. Honour the victims and demand GUN CONTROL. NOW.
“Volunteer, stand up, donate, reach out. Wake up and insist on common-sense gun safety legislation. Innocent lives depend on it.”
Some of the organisations supported by Madonna with this video include the March For Our Lives Foundation, which was founded after the 2018 Parkland school shooting, the Sandy Hook Promise Foundation, Human Rights Campaign Foundation and One Pulse for America.