Vice President Joe Biden joined singer and survivor, Lady Gaga, on stage at the Oscars Sunday night to spotlight the issue of campus sexual assault.
Biden introduced Lady Gaga’s performance of “Til It Happens to You,” a nominee for best original song, featured in the documentary “The Hunting Ground,” which deals with campus rape. While Gaga performed, she was joined on stage by dozens of survivors, breaking their silence about this epidemic of violence.
These heroes stood together in solidarity, in front of thousands and on live TV. After the song, they raised their joined hands and brought the audience to their feet. It was powerful and moving, and together, they made it impossible to ignore the human impact of sexual violence.
Biden drafted the Violence Against Women Act as a senator and has long been an outspoken ally against domestic and sexual violence. He used the opportunity to promote the White House’s “It’s On Us” campaign against sexual assault, which the Obama administration launched the campaign last September.
Lady Gaga and the Vice President were just a few of the celebrities who used their power and the stage to honor survivors and break the silence around sexual violence.
Our favorite quote of the evening is from Mark Ruffalo, who joined survivors in a protest outside the Los Angeles Cathedral prior to the Awards: “Now, more and more people are coming forward and telling their stories of sexual abuse. Breaking that silence is like a great weight lifting.”