Madonna has spoken out against homophobic bullying, calling it “torture”.

She appeared on the Ellen DeGeneres show yesterday by video-link.

The superstar, referring to an apparent spate of suicides among gay teenagers, said: “The concept that we are torturing teenagers because they are gay – it’s unfathomable.

“It’s like lynching black people or Hitler exterminating Jews. Sorry if I’m going on a rampage right now but this is America. The land of the free and the home of the brave.”

Madonna said that she could relate to teenagers who feel isolated because of their sexuality or gender identity.

“I still feel different,” she said. “I can totally relate to the idea of feeling isolated and alienated. I was incredibly lonely as a child, as a teenager. I have to say I never felt like I fit in in school.”

She said she was taken to a gay disco by a gay ballet teacher, who “told me it was good and okay to be different…and ironically made me feel I was part of the world and it was okay to be different”.

The star also thanked the gay community for backing her.

The gay community “has been incredibly supportive of me” she said. “I wouldn’t have a career if it weren’t for the gay community.”

See below for video.