After immense pressure, Lady Gaga addresses the R. Kelly scandal.

Gaga seemingly had no choice but to comment on the R. Kelly controversy. She faced intense scrutiny for side-stepping the drama, most notably declining to appear in Surviving R. Kelly, Lifetime’s six-part series featuring interviews with women, including Kitti Jones, #MeToo founder Tarana Burke, R&B singer Sparkle and Kelly’s ex-wife Andrea Kelly, who speak out against Kelly’s history of alleged sexual abuse and pedophilia, but the Internet wasn’t having it. Read BreatheHeavy’s detailed story, titled Lady Gaga Criticized For Declining To Comment On The R. Kelly Controversy, here.

Gaga has since released an official statement addressing her 2013 collaboration with R. Kelly, “Do What U Want,” and promises to remove it off streaming platforms. She also comments on her regrettable decision making. Ugh, hindsight is always 20/20.

“I stand behind these women 1000%, believe them, know they are suffering and in pain, and feel strongly that their voices should be heard and taken seriously,” Gaga said. “What I am hearing about the allegations against R. Kelly is absolutely horrifying and indefensible.”

She added: “As a victim of sexual assault myself, I made both the song and video at a dark time in my life, my intention was to create something extremely defiant and provocative because I was angry and still hadn’t processed the trauma that had occurred in my own life. The song is called ‘Do What U Want (With My Body),’ I think it’s clear how explicitly twisted my thinking was at the time. If I could go back and have a talk with my younger self I’d tell her to go through the therapy I have since then, so that I could understand the confused post-traumatic state that I was in- or if therapy was not available to me or anyone in my situation-to seek help, and speak as openly and honestly as possible about what we’ve been through.”

Gaga says she’ll remove their ARTPOP collaboration off iTunes and other streaming services.

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“I can’t go back, but I can go forward and continue to support women, men, and people of all sexual identities, and of all races, who are victims of sexual assault. I have demonstrated my stance on this issue and others many times throughout my career. I share this not to make excuses for myself, but to explain. Til it happens to you, you don’t know how it feels. But I do know how I feel now. I intend to remove this song off of iTunes and other streaming platforms and will not be working with him again. I’m sorry, both for my poor judgment when I was young, and for not speaking out sooner. I love you.”

Class act through and through.

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