The Double-Edged Sword of Celebrities With a Cause

What Women Really Think
Sept. 21 2010 12:08 PM

The Double-Edged Sword of Celebrities With a Cause

/blogs/xx_factor/2010/09/21/when_is_lady_gaga_too_much_of_a_joke_for_serious_politics/jcr:content/body/slate_image

Yesterday Lady Gaga took to the stage in Portland, Maine , in an unlikely outfit (blue blazer, pants) to speak in favor of repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Unfortunately, her speech was as inarticulate as her YouTube video on the subject matter . And this was after her mildly confusing double negative tweet on Sept. 17, "Fight against the abolishment of DON’T ASK DON’T TELL." Much like her poker face, her words seem to be unreadable. To clear up any misunderstandings, Gaga offered this simple metaphor: "Equality is the prime rib of America, but because I am gay, I don’t get to enjoy the greatest cut of meat my country has to offer," Lady Gaga said, referencing a dress she wore last week to the MTV Video Music Awards that was made out of cuts of steak. "Shouldn’t everyone deserve to wear the same meat dress I do?" she said.

Advertisement

Okaaaaay . Lady Gaga doesn’t get to enjoy "meat," but she gets to wear "meat." And everyone deserves a "meat dress," which is apparently distinct from enjoying the "meat," so following the scarce logic, everyone should be able to wear some sort of controversial, superficial covering of equality? Or something? I’m confused. And I’d maybe like a hamburger for lunch.

Admittedly, this was a better explanation than her first attempt at justifying the meat dress to Ellen DeGeneres on Sept. 13 when she sounded like a parody of herself, referencing some unspecified rights, undefined beliefs, and the apparent nonrights of our flesh: "If we don’t stand up for what we believe in and if we don’t fight for our rights, pretty soon we’re going to have as much rights as the meat on our bones." Remember in Team America: World Police when Alec Baldwin starts espousing on how the actors' guild can make the world a better place through the power of acting? This is like that, only Team America was satire.

It’s great that Lady Gaga personally supports repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. It should be repealed. But at what point does bafflement outweigh the boon of star power?

Photograph of Lady Gaga by Mark Ralston for Getty Images.

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

The Democrats’ War at Home

How can the president’s party defend itself from the president’s foreign policy blunders?

Congress’ Public Shaming of the Secret Service Was Political Grandstanding at Its Best

Michigan’s Tradition of Football “Toughness” Needs to Go—Starting With Coach Hoke

A Plentiful, Renewable Resource That America Keeps Overlooking

Animal manure.

Windows 8 Was So Bad That Microsoft Will Skip Straight to Windows 10

Politics

Cringing. Ducking. Mumbling.

How GOP candidates react whenever someone brings up reproductive rights or gay marriage.

Building a Better Workplace

You Deserve a Pre-cation

The smartest job perk you’ve never heard of.

Hasbro Is Cracking Down on Scrabble Players Who Turn Its Official Word List Into Popular Apps

Florida State’s New President Is Underqualified and Mistrusted. He Just Might Save the University.

  News & Politics
Jurisprudence
Sept. 30 2014 2:36 PM This Court Erred The Supreme Court has almost always sided with the wealthy, the privileged, and the powerful, a new book argues.
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 30 2014 7:02 PM At Long Last, eBay Sets PayPal Free
  Life
Lexicon Valley
Sept. 30 2014 1:23 PM What Can Linguistics Tell Us About Writing Better? An Interview with Steven Pinker.
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 30 2014 12:34 PM Parents, Get Your Teenage Daughters the IUD
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Sept. 30 2014 3:21 PM Meet Jordan Weissmann Five questions with Slate’s senior business and economics correspondent.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 30 2014 8:54 PM Bette Davis Talks Gender Roles in a Delightful, Animated Interview From 1963
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 30 2014 7:00 PM There’s Going to Be a Live-Action Tetris Movie for Some Reason
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Sept. 30 2014 6:44 PM Ebola Was Already Here How the United States contains deadly hemorrhagic fevers.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 28 2014 8:30 PM NFL Players Die Young. Or Maybe They Live Long Lives. Why it’s so hard to pin down the effects of football on players’ lives.