Lady Gaga may be one of the most famous people on the planet, but she definitely does more than her share to stick up for those with less power. She has passionately campaigned for LGBT rights and lent her bazillion dollar voice to speak out against bullying. She met with President Obama in September to discuss the creation of an anti-bullying legislation, and now Mama Monster is taking matters into her own hands by launching her long-awaited Born This Way Foundation.
The organization is set to launch on February 29 (but of course) at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and will work in tandem with the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the California Endowment and several other groups. Gaga will direct the non-profit charity alongside her mother, Cynthia Germanotta. According to the press release, the foundation aims to “explore the best ways to reach youth and create a new culture of kindness, bravery, acceptance and empowerment.”
Lady Gaga is a busy, busy lady, so you have to forgive us for combining two such different items into one post. Otherwise, there would be days when we’d just have to call ourselves TheGAGAlife. Anyway, serious story first: Mother Monster followed through on the pledge she made to meet with the Obama administration following the tragic death of gay bullying victim Jamey Rodemeyer in September. She didn’t get to talk to the prez himself, but yesterday she met with White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett, who wrote about the meeting on the White House blog.
“Today, I had the opportunity to welcome her to the White House, where we discussed ways we could work together to make sure that no child comes under attack, regardless of his or her race, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other factor,” Jarrett wrote. She said she was moved by Gaga’s efforts to end bullying with the Born This Way Foundation, and went on to outline how Obama is also addressing the issue. The administration released a report yesterday analyzing current anti-bullying laws and policies with an eye toward what else can be done. Jarrett concluded her post pledging to work with the Born This Way Foundation and “every American who is willing to help make our society more kind, inclusive, and equal.”
Lady Gaga knows you were born that way, and now she has the grant-based funding to prove it! Madre Monster announced yesterday that she will be partnering with the California Endowment, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University to start the Born This Way Foundation. Gaga’s new non-profit will focus on youth issues such as “self-confidence, well-being, anti-bullying, mentoring and career development,” as well as the best way to soothe fishnet-related crotch chafing. We were so moved by Gaga’s new venture, which will reportedly be directed by Gaga and her mother Cynthia Germanotta, we couldn’t help but imagine the other vital charities that could help society, if only celebrities would learn to open their hearts. And massive wallets…
- The Lindsay Lohan Foundation For A Cleaner Morgue
- The Nicholas Cage Center For Finding Out How Did It Get Burned
- The Matt Damon Charity for Remembering Ben Affleck
- John Mayer Clinic For Women Who Have Dated John Mayer
- Nickelback‘s “Save The Audience” Alliance
- Kanye West‘s Seriously, How Great Is Kanye West? Coalition
- Lamar Odom‘s Institute for Sustainable Kardashian Marriage
The devastating suicide of a boy in upstate New York has prompted Lady Gaga to meet with President Obama for a discussion on anti-bullying legislation. 14-year-old Jamey Rodemeyer, a high school student from Buffalo, took his life on Sunday after being tormented by classmates for his homosexuality. The tragedy has the singer up in arms, calling on support from her fans and the president for young people in Jamey’s situation. “Bullying must become be illegal. It is a hate crime,” she tweeted yesterday. “I am meeting with our President. I will not stop fighting. This must end. Our generation has the power to end it. Trend it #MakeALawForJamey.”
Though no stranger to gay rights, this case has special significance to Mother Monster. Several months back, Jamey posted his own “It Gets Better” support video on Youtube, in which he cited Lady Gaga as a role model and pillar of strength. “She lets me know that I was born this way,” he said at the clip’s conclusion. “Just love yourself and you’re set. And I promise you, it’ll get better.” But the bullying didn’t cease for Jamey. “No one in my school cares about preventing suicide,” Jamey posted to his Tumblr just a few weeks before his death. “I always say how bullied I am, but no one listens. … What do I have to do so people will listen to me?”
The unbelievably tragic tale has Gaga, and millions of others, furious and heartbroken. “The past days I’ve spent reflecting, crying, and yelling,” she wrote. “I have so much anger. It is hard to feel love when cruelty takes someones life.” She hopes that the creation of a law making bullying a hate crime will save others from the agonizing abuse Jamey suffered. No official date for the presidential meeting has been set as of yet, but we’ll let you know as soon as we hear.
[Photo: Getty Images]