Katy Perry Reveals She Was ‘Taught To Fear’ Gay People & Did More Than ‘Kiss A Girl’ During HRC Gala Speech

This past weekend, the HRC held it’s annual Los Angeles Gala where America Ferrera and Katy Perry both received awards. Lena Dunham presented the Ugly Betty actress the organization’s Ally for Equality Award while Westworld’s Shannon Woodward presented the “Chained To The Rhythm” singer the HRC’s National Equality Award.

During her acceptance speech, Perry shared some revealing personal details. With regards to her breakout hit, “I Kissed a Girl,” the 32-year-old popstar stated, “Truth be told, I did more than that!” She added, “But how was I going to reconcile that with the gospel-singing girl raised in youth groups that were pro conversion camps? What I did know was that I was curious, and even then I knew that sexuality was not as black and white as this dress. But in 2008, when that song came out, I knew that it started a conversation that a lot of the world seemed curious enough to sing along to it.”

Perry then talked in detail about her strict religious upbringing due to both parents being pastors. She emotionally said she was “taught to fear” gay people and how she “prayed the gay away at Jesus camps.”

“These people were nothing like I had been taught to fear. They were the most free, strong, kind, and inclusive people that I have ever met,” she said. “They stimulated my mind, and they filled my heart with joy, and they danced with joy while doing it. These people are actually, magic, and they are magic because they are living their truth.”

Watch Katy’s entire speech below, along with Dunham and Ferrara’s turn at the podium.

#HRCLADinner: Katy Perry, Lena Dunham, America Ferrera