Lady GaGa made her first onstage appearance since her hip surgery at New York's Gay Pride Rally to help kick off festivities celebrating LGBT community on heels of Supreme Court's overturning of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). She gave an emotional speech and performed her own version of "The Star-Spangled Banner".
Wearing a strapless black dress and clutching a rainbow flag in one hand, the Mother Monster took the podium in front of a sea of the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender crowd in the Big Apple. She said of how her gay fans' support meant a lot to her. She recounted how her gay friend took her in when she had hard time blending in back in high school.
"When I was in high school and grade school and younger, I was considered to be an outcast and I just couldn't find my place," she said. "Where did I fit in? And I look back on that time and I remember feeling that I was cut from a different mold."
"There was a particular crowd who did accept me," the avid LGBT supporter added. "There was a particular crowd who made room for me at their table, who held me up when I felt I couldn't, who loved me for exactly who I was. It was you."
"You saved me, my friends in the LGBT community, time and time again. And I saw God for the first real time in all of you," she went on. "You understood my need to hide behind the wigs, the glasses, the glamour, the clothing -- the fantasy that set me free. My passion for theatre, my passion for art, my worth as a woman."
"The violence that has taken place towards LGBTs in the past moths is unacceptable here and anywhere," she continued. "We are not a niche. We are part, a big giant part of humanity. It's time for us to be mainstream. I demand the rights! To safe streets!"
The outspoken singer then grabbed the mic and launched into an a capella rendition of the National Anthem. She changed the lyrics to be more fitting for the event, "Oh say, does our star-spangled flag of pride yet wave," drawing the crowd wild with cheers.
On Twitter, GaGa tweeted, "We stand tall today.#DomaStruckDown So many fought for so long. Be proud, the prejudice are now the minority."