Well the other thing with the mermaid act is that Bette Midler did the same thing several years ago. She also couldn't move on stage without a wheelchair. She named her mermaid though, and it was it's own character, so that's how she avoided 'omghandicap' issues. Also, the 80s wasn't really a hypersensitive PC kinda time.
I like Gaga and all, I just always wonder about things like this... she said she came up with this independently, but now it's like a retroactive Bette tribute? i'unno.
Kudaranai: I was on the subway and this man just PEED