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Lady Gaga Honors Sexual Assault Survivors at the Oscars

Kevin Winter / Staff 

Last night's Oscars was full of some seriously #empowering moments. From Chris Rock's statements on latent racism in Hollywood to Leo's poignant speech on environmentalism, we were left feeling all of the feels.

But the true show stealer was Lady Gaga's emotional and inspiring performance of her Oscar nominated song "Til It Happens To You" a song she co-wrote for the film The Hunting Ground, a documentary examining the culture of rape and sexual assault on college campuses. (One in five women have been raped, according to the CDC.)

Gaga's performance was introduced by surprise guest Vice President Joe Biden, who delivered a call-to-action to the millions of people watching to change the culture surrounding victims of sexual assault by getting involved with the White House initiative "It's On Us." (You can take the pledge at

We've never known Lady Gaga to shy away from a mega-watt spotlight, but her empowering performance was uncharacteristically understated. A white-hot Gaga, sitting at a white piano and belting some white-hot vocals. No pyrotechnics needed for her powerful message.

Instead, her performance gave all the attention to the survivors of assault, who joined her on stage in the emotional tribute, eliciting many tears and a standing ovation. You can watch the whole performance here:


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