NEW YORK â€” Madonna, an outspoken critic of President-elect Donald Trump, is trying to put a positive spin on his Friday inauguration.
“He’s actually doing us a great service, because we have gone as low as we can go,” she said Thursday night. “We can only go up from here, so what are we going to do? We have two choices, destruction and creation. I chose creation.”
The superstar, dressed in all black and wearing a shirt that read “Feminist,” spoke at the Brooklyn Museum with artist Marilyn Minter about art in a time of protest, among other things, in a discussion moderated by author and poet Elizabeth Alexander, who performed a work at the first inauguration of President Barack Obama.
A clip of author James Baldwin, an inspiration of Madonna’s, played before the talk, as did her 2013 short film, “Secret Revolution,” dedicated to people whose rights have been abused and denied.
On the eve of Trump becoming president, both Madonna and Minter vowed to lead protests against him, including attending Saturday’s Women’s March in Washington.
“This is the most frightened I’ve ever been,” Minter said. “The most qualified candidate who ever ran was defeated by the most unqualified candidate who ever ran, and it’s all because of misogyny.”
Madonna said that while she was “horrified” Trump won the election over Hillary Clinton, she now believes it was necessary.
“I do believe that Trump was elected for a reason, to show us how lazy and un-unified and lackadaisical and taking for granted we’ve become of our freedom and the rights that we have as Americans,” Madonna said. “I feel like people forgot what was written in the Constitution.”
She added: “They always say it’s darkest before the dawn and I feel this had to happen to bring people together, so let’s get this party started.”
It wasn’t all political talk. Madonna talked about her early days in New York, hanging with artists like Andy Warhol and Keith Haring, and how her kids are not the least bit impressed with her iconic career.
“They want nothing to do with it,” she said. “I always say with my kids, every day is a small crucifixion.”
Madonna also explained why she considers herself a feminist.
“I believe that women have the right to be treated with the same human rights as men,” she said. “I feel like we are still very far behind.
This story corrects spelling of writer’s name to Mumbi from Mubi.
Nekesa Mumbi Moody, The Associated Press