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Katy Perry was honored with the Human Rights Campaign’s National Equality Award last night in Los Angeles.
During her speech, Perry spoke openly and honestly about her own sexuality, the LGBTQ community’s contributions to her career and the current political climate. “There is no other community that has done more to shape who I am today and there is no other community that I believe in more than you,” she began.
“I kissed a girl and truth be told, I did more than that. But how was I going to reconcile that with the gospel singing girl raised in youth groups who were pro-conversion camps. What I did know is that I was curious and even then I knew sexuality wasn’t as black and white as this dress,” the singer admitted.
“And honestly, I haven’t always gotten it right,” Katy Perry continues. “But in 2008 when that song came out I knew I had started a conversation that a lot of the world was curious enough to sing along to.”
“Most of my unconscious adolescence, I prayed the gay away at my Jesus camps. But then in the middle of it all, in a twist of events, I found my gift and my gift introduced me to people outside of my bubble. My bubble started to burst,” Perry added.
Perry took some jabs at Mike Pence, too. “When I was growing up homosexuality, was synonymous with the word abomination and hell. A place of mashing teeth, continuous burning of skin and probably Mike Pence’s ultimate guest list for a BBQ.”
“You don’t get to choose your family but you get to choose your tribe,” she continued. “Many of the people I admire and trust and work with belong to the LGBTQ community. And without them I would be half of the person I am today. My life is rich in every capacity because of them.”
“It’s time to lead with empathy and grace and compassion now more than ever to find the unity we need now,” Perry said. “I’ll never cease to be a champion, an ally, a spotlight, and a loving voice for all LGBTQ-identifying people.”