Gaga revealed she suffers from PTSD during an interview on the “Today” show last week, nearly two years after first opening up about being raped at age 19.
Evidently, Morgan has his doubts about her experiences. Following the mental health revelation, the British journalist tweeted his skepticism regarding Gaga’s claims. He also brought Madonna, who has discussed her own rape, into the mix.
In one tweet, Morgan responds directly to a Twitter user who said he was “ignoring the fact Gaga has PTSD because she was raped.”
His messages are a glaring example of rape culture, an environment that discourages women from coming forward with stories of sexual abuse for fear they will not be taken seriously. The numbers help tell that tragic story. For every 1,000 incidents of rape, only 344 are reported to police, and of the rapes that are reported, the majority of perpetrators will never go to jail or prison, according to RAINN. Still, people like Morgan continue to suggest that not reporting rape may be a sign of dishonesty.
In response to Morgan’s apparent ignorance, Gaga decided to take a page from Michelle Obama’s playbook and offer to talk to him about why some women don’t report rape.
She also made a point of telling Morgan that PTSD is “not just a military disorder,” as he suggested, but part of a “mental health youth epidemic.”
(As a side note, Gaga’s case is right there in the definition supported by the National Center for PTSD: the disorder “involves a pattern of symptoms that some individuals develop after experiencing a traumatic event such as sexual assault.”)
Morgan responded by telling the “Born This Way” singer, “Let’s talk.”
But when he questioned whether Gaga could “handle” him in an interview, she came back with a snappy reply:
After doling out a backhanded compliment for agreeing to an interview, Morgan noted his chat with Gaga would be a “fascinating debate” ― and made an easy joke about her infamous meat dress.
Gaga didn’t let him get off so easy, though. She sent another perfectly crafted tweet his way:
Morgan got in the last word: “OK, if you’re big enough to do this, I’m big enough to play fair too.”