Last week, Madonna released her video for Madame X single “God Control”. The clip was meant to protest gun violence, but its graphic nature has since drawn plenty of criticism, including from Emma González, Parkland shooting survivor and fervent gun control advocate.
In the visual, Madonna and a group of people are gunned down while partying on a dance floor. The visceral scene bears a striking resemblance to the events that unfolded during the 2016 Pulse nightclub massacre which left 49 killed and scores more injured. In fact, the clip was released just two weeks after the three-year anniversary of the shooting.
The video itself is prefaced with a warning to viewers, however, Madonna has said that the intense scenes were necessary in order to make a point. “[U]nderstand that this is what happens. Guns kill,” she told CNN. “A bullet rips through your body, knocks you to the floor and takes your life, and you bleed to death. I mean this is reality.”
Wake up and insist on common-sense gun safety legislation. Innocent lives depend on it. Join me in supporting the following organizations: @Everytown @AMarch4OurLives @GAGnoguns @sandyhook @HRC @TheTaskForce @TransEquality @NCADV @1Pulse4America @SUPGVNetwork @MPJInstitute
— Madonna (@Madonna) June 26, 2019
“People can watch it in action films, and they are OK with it, but when it is about the truth, the reality of what’s happening in our country, why is it too graphic?” the 60 year old added.
Despite Madonna’s reasoning behind the video, González condemned the pop icon for her creative choices and lack of sensitivity. “She should have sent out a message warning what her new video contained, ESPECIALLY to the Pulse Victims, ESPECIALLY as it was released Just After the Anniversary on June 12th,” she wrote on Twitter over the weekend.
“This is NOT the correct way to talk about gun violence, unlike how many fans have been exclaiming — people who have been working in the GVP community know how to talk about gun violence, not most celebrities,” continued the 19-year-old activist.
She should have sent out a message warning what her new video contained, ESPECIALLY to the Pulse Victims, ESPECIALLY as it was released Just After the Anniversary on June 12th.
— Emma González (@Emma4Change) June 29, 2019
González isn’t alone in her criticism of the “God Control” clip. Patience Carter, who survived the Pulse club shooting, acknowledged Madonna’s “attempt” at making a point, but overall found the visual disturbing. “I couldn’t even watch after the first 45 secs @Madonna,” Carter tweeted.
“There are so many creative avenues that could’ve been taken to bring awareness to gun control,” she continued. “The Victims of these mass shootings should always be taken into consideration. I applaud the attempt, but I am truly disturbed.”
I couldn’t even watch after the first 45 secs @Madonna There are so many creative avenues that could’ve been taken to bring awareness to gun control. The Victims of these mass shootings should always be taken into consideration. I applaud the attempt, but I am truly disturbed. https://t.co/n8VO2KfpNR
— Patience N Carter (@Patience326_) June 26, 2019
Madame X is out now and contains a single called “I Rise”, which actually samples one of González’s gun control speeches. Madonna will support the new album with a corresponding “Madame X Tour”, tickets for which can be purchased here.
Check out the “God Control” video for yourself below.