Did Madonna display a galling lack of judgment...or was she merely taking the whole theme of "Express Yourself" to heart? Either way, the iconic entertainer certainly offended some of her fans in Denver Thursday night when she started off her show with a scene involving guns and simulated shooting into the crowd.
Madonna's used the gun-firing skit--which was described on local news KUSA's Facebook account by various fans as graphic and including "a blood-spattered screen"--on previous tour dates. However, of course, Denver is a sensitive city in which to perform such theatrics, given the tragic mass shooting in Aurora, Colorado just three months ago that claimed 12 lives.
The singer has not commented on the Denver show as of yet. She said prior to starting her tour that she is not a gun supporter, and the skit is an artistic statement symbolizing intolerance and "the pain I have felt from having my heart broken."
KUSA, who claimed to have received several calls from offended concert-goers that evening, encouraged fans to debate whether the stunt was appropriate or not--which resulted in a mixed bag of commentary. While many were upset ("I see it as a lack of respect towards our city after such a huge tragedy," "I pray none of the victims/survivors were in that audience"), still more defended the show, citing freedom of speech, oversensitivity regarding what was obviously a simulated stunt, and the fact that the audience should have known Madonna's performance would be controversial given her history.
"If it is such an issue, Denver needs to ban all TV, movies and broadway shows with any guns period," noted one fan.
The gunplay wasn't the only thing fans were buzzing about regarding the Denver date. According to many, Madonna took the stage remarkably late, "stepped on a cross," and took off her top to reveal "OBAMA" printed on her chest.