May 23 marked the 10 year anniversary of Lady Gaga’s legendary album Born This Way. While producing popular hits “Judas” and “Edge of Glory,” the most enduring and impactful song from the album is that of the same name.
“Born This Way,” the song, released early 2011 as a single to promote the album, has since become an anthem for the underrepresented. Because of lyrics such as “You were born this way/God makes no mistakes,” and Gaga’s open love for her LGBT+ fanbase, the song has become particularly associated with the queer community and is a consistent addition to any Pride playlist.
In celebration, the neighborhood of West Hollywood, one of the many districts that make up the city of Los Angeles, and identified by its large LGBT+ community, declared May 23 to be “Born This Way Day.”
Lady Gaga attended a ceremony in West Hollywood to celebrate both her album’s anniversary and the new proclamation—announced by the song’s title written on the street in pride colors—which she posted on her Instagram.
Lady Gaga follows in a long tradition of queer-affirming female pop stars. From the days of Cher to Mariah Carey and now the pop stars of today, the LGBT+ community have often found solace in the glamorous, often campy aesthetics and bold personalities of the women in pop who willingly embraced the societal outcasts with open arms.
“Born This Way” serves as a needed reminder to so many, in a time of hate-motivated actions and mandates like the various anti-trans laws being teased across the country, that they are exactly what the title of the song says: born this way. “Born This Way’s” legacy lies not in its technical greatness—if anything, its musical production will be most remembered for being similar to Madonna’s “Express Yourself”—but its message of unconditional love, which is far too scarce a commodity.
To listen to Born This Way, click here.
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