World

Blowing up White House was a 'metaphor'

WASHINGTON Pop singer Madonna, who said in a speech at the Women's March in Washington, DC, on Saturday that she had thought about "blowing up the White House", said on Sunday that she was speaking metaphorically.

Madonna's speech, which was criticised on social media, led some television networks to abruptly stop their live feeds of the march, which drew hundreds of thousands of people in demonstrations across the United States to protest against the election of Mr Donald Trump as president.

"I am not a violent person," she said on Instagram.

"I spoke in metaphor, and I shared two ways of looking at things - one was to be hopeful, and one was to feel anger and outrage, which I have personally felt."

The 58-year-old led the crowd on Saturday in chants of "Yes, we're ready", to challenge policies promoted by Mr Trump, who alienated many women during the election campaign with comments about his rivals' attractiveness and promises to outlaw or diminish abortion rights.

Mr Trump's comments in a decade-old video declaring that women would allow him, as a celebrity, to kiss and grope them further outraged many.

But Madonna preceded the chants with coarse words for critics of the march.

"To our detractors that insist this march will never add up to anything, f*** you," she said.

Her words drew immediate criticism on social media.

On YouTube, where the speech was streamed live and in recorded formats, several users called the singer "evil".

Others expressed outrage over her comment about blowing up the White House.

On Twitter, some users demanded she be investigated for making terrorist threats.

The turnout for Saturday's march was unprecedented, as organisers took credit for mobilising five million marchers worldwide.

Crowd estimates for the Washington centrepiece of the demonstration were not available.

But turnout clearly exceeded the 200,000 projected in advance by organisers, filling long stretches of downtown Washington around the White House and the National Mall. 
- REUTERS

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