The Met Gala doesn’t exactly scream “forum for social change.” Celebrities walk the grand entrance stairs in gowns that could fund dozens of college educations and snap selfies with hands manicured to the tune of $2,000. Last year’s ball, entitled “China: Through the Looking Glass,” even led to some embarrassingly politically incorrect costumes when certain attendees — and the designers behind their look — bungled their Asian references (Lady Gaga, Georgia May Jagger, we’re looking at you).
However, when Madonna gets outfitted in yards of costly couture, she does it for a good cause — and we don’t mean the upkeep of the Met’s Costume Institute. Although this year’s breast and derrière-baring lace number triggered a slew of criticism, the inimitable pop star made it clear her reckless (we’re using the Beyoncé intonation here) Givenchy dress was “a political statement as well as a fashion statement” intended for one of the most-watched red carpets of the year.
In an Instagram post on Wednesday, the professional provocatrice called out her critics for their ageism and sexism, accompanied by snaps of her flaunting the controversial outfit and literally flipping off haters.
We have fought and continue to fight for civil rights and gay rights around the world. When it comes to Women’s rights we are still in the dark ages. My dress at the Met Ball was a political statement as well as a fashion statement. The fact that people actually believe a woman is not allowed to express her sexuality and be adventurous past a certain age is proof that we still live in an age-ist and sexist society. I have never thought in a limited way and I’m not going to start. We cannot effect change unless we are willing to take risks By being fearless and By taking the road leas traveled by. Thats how we change history. If you have a problem with the way I dress it is simply a reflection of your prejudice. I’m not afraid to pave the way for all the girls behind me! As Nina Simone once said, the definition of freedom is being fearless. I remain Unapologetic and a Rebel in this life and all the others. Join my fight for Gender. Equality!
Madge’s message harkens back to Tina Fey’s New Yorker piece “Confessions of a Juggler,” in which she wrote: “I have a suspicion — and hear me out, because this is a rough one — that the definition of ‘crazy’ in show business is a woman who keeps talking even after no one wants to fuck her anymore.”
How we love all the bold women who take the stage and say what the world needs to hear. (Even if, in all honesty, we don’t think this year’s Gala was the best reflection of Riccardo Tisci’s talents.) Madonna, you are the answer to our past, present and future prayers.