America relaxed back into their seats last night at the end of the 2nd quarter of Super Bowl LI, a game that would soon make Super Bowl history as the first Super Bowl game ever to go into overtime. Somewhat skeptical of the performer, America watched in judgment as Lady Gaga took the stage for her 13-minute Pepsi Zero Sugar Super Bowl Halftime Show.
A performance eloquently designed around a solid political statement, Gaga voiced her views without saying one word. Starting with a rendition of “God Bless America,” Gaga showed her opposition towards Donald Trump’s Muslim ban and discriminatory acts against refugees, immigrants, Mexicans, and Muslims. Then, she jumped off the stadium roof. Yes, she JUMPED OFF THE STADIUM ROOF and landed on the stage where she showed her love to her LGBTQ loved ones and fans with “Born this Way.” Her dancers varied in size, shape, and color, and it was BEAUTIFUL. Her performance was outstanding; the dancing was in sync, her vocals were flawless, her outfits shined brighter than the SuperBowl rings ever could.
But although her performance was a bold statement that paid homage to what America should be – an all accepting, all loving country – football-watchers at home judged her body all the while shoving chicken wings in their mouthes and washing them down with cheap beer. People laughed, “why does her belly jiggle?” One hater tweeted, “picture of lady gaga’s stomach” while including of photo of a container of Pillsbury biscuit dough. But Gaga’s fans fought back and praised Lady Gaga for performing in such a vulnerable way, thanking her for showing her “real body.” Lady Gaga fought racism, anti-semitism, islamophobia, xenophobia, misogyny, and sexism in one performance and people are still focused on her appearance. Ain’t that a damn shame.
So, hello, America, the fattest country with the biggest damn food portions in this world, it’s time to cut the hypocrisy and listen.
Lady Gaga has not had it easy. She’s a victim of rape and a woman who suffers from PTSD, depression, and a past eating disorder. Through all this, she’s been bashed and criticized and made fun of and hated. Now I’m not going to say that I didn’t comment on her body last night, because I did, but I only commented on it with loving words. I was comforted by the realness of her stomach and her legs and the marks on her body. For years I’ve felt self-conscious and shown hatred towards my body, but Lady Gaga went out there in front of all her opposers and DID.THAT. Her act of courage settled the minds of those who have body issues or body dysmorphia, even for just 13 minutes.
If the only thing you got out of her empowering, beautiful, kick-ass performance was that her stomach jiggled a little, you need to rethink a few things; your morals, why you’re lonely and bitter and single, or better yet if you are in a relationship, the body of your significant other – is it perfect? No, nobody’s is, because everyone’s got body issues, America.
Lady Gaga, I commend you. I love you. Thanks for being you.