The veteran pop singer likened age-discrimination to racist and homophobic comments, saying, “It’s still the one area where you can totally discriminate against somebody and talk shit. Because of their age. Only females, though. Not males. So in that respect, we still live in a very sexist society.”
She continued: “No one would dare to say a degrading remark about being black or dare to say a degrading remark on Instagram about someone being gay. But my age — anybody and everybody would say something degrading to me. And I always think to myself, why is that accepted? What’s the difference between that and racism, or any discrimination? They’re judging me by my age. I don’t understand. I’m trying to get my head around it.”
At 56 years old, Madonna voiced her passion for embracing sexuality and continuing to bend the rules. “Because women, generally, when they reach a certain age, have accepted that they’re not allowed to behave a certain way,” she said. “But I don’t follow the rules. I never did, and I’m not going to start.”
In reference to her risque red-carpet and stage attire at the 2015 Grammys, the singer proudly expressed, “This is what a 56-year-old ass looks like, motherf—ers! … If I have to be the person who opens the door for women to believe and understand and embrace the idea that they can be sexual and look good and be as relevant in their 50s or their 60s or whatever as they were in their20s, then so be it.”
Madonna’s thirteenth studio album, Rebel Heart, will be released on March 6.
This article originally appeared in THR.com.