Madonna has claimed that there is “no debate or discussion” about vaccines due to fear of being “cancelled”.
The queen of pop expressed the sentiment in a new interview, in which she gave her thoughts on artistic responsibility and the nature of “disturbing the peace”.
Asked by playwright Jeremy O Harris – for V Magazine – where peace exists in a world affected by a pandemic and “billionaires wrecking the economy”, Madonna replied: “It’s interesting because peace is subjective. The way people think about the pandemic, for instance, that the vaccination is the only answer or the polarisation of thinking you’re either on this side or the other. There’s no debate, there’s no discussion.”
Madonna added that she believes art is meant to “disturb the status quo” and that she is “frightened” by censorship.
“No one’s allowed to speak their mind right now,” she continued. “No one’s allowed to say what they really think about things for fear of being cancelled, cancel culture. In cancel culture, disturbing the peace is probably an act of treason.”
Harris said that he believes “cancel culture” isn’t as frightening as “some people feel it is”, to which Madonna replied: “The thing is, the quieter you get, the more fearful you get, the more dangerous anything is. We’re giving it power by shutting the f*** up completely.”
In July 2020, Madonna’s Instagram account was flagged by the site for spreading “false information” about coronavirus. The pop star had shared a video of physician and pastor Dr Stella Immanuel, who falsely claimed that social distancing and face masks are ineffective in the fight against Covid, and made the unsubstantiated claim that hydroxychloroquine is a “cure for Covid”.
Madonna claimed that Immanuel was her “hero” and falsely wrote that a Covid vaccine had “been found and proven and has been available for months. They would rather let fear control the people and let the rich get richer and the poor get poorer and sick get sicker”.
Immanuel’s video had been shared by both Donald Trump and Donald Trump Jr in the days before Madonna herself shared it.
Annie Lennox was among the stars and fans to condemn Madonna’s sharing of the video, commenting beneath the post: “This is utter madness. I can’t believe that you are endorsing this dangerous quackery.”
Madonna deleted the video soon after.