Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I Was Born This Way . . . And It Gets Better!

Picture this: Sis and Bud performing Lady Gaga's "Born This Way," but Sis starts it in her five-year-old way, "It doesn't matter if you love him, or capital H-A-M!" Yep, the girl loves ham more than Him. Then Bud joins her and they start singing about loving themselves and being great the way they are. They even mimic all the choreography from "Glee"--putting their "paws up," curling their hair, smearing on the lipstick--but sometimes the meaning escapes them--they still haven't figured out what a "boudoir" is! It's adorable. And a fantastic message.

Yep, we're all Gleeks over here and it's been quite a week or two, with Kurt coming back to McKinley and the New Directions last week--culminating in the "Born this Way" song that the kids love. And then prom last night. Whose breath wasn't caught in their throat when Kurt was announced "Queen?" But I think he turned it around beautifully, with "Eat your heart out, Kate Middleton!" The kids are going to love the songs when I show them later today, the songs, not the episode. I only wish that Santana and Brittany could've moved along in their relationship. I'm even loving some of the commercials, including Google Chrome's support of Dan Savage's It Gets Better movement and the ad with the lesbian couple together for 29 years for New Yorkers United for Marriage.

At the same time, "Glee" has taken quite a beating the last few weeks, from Glenn Beck and from a Fox affiliate in Houston, which worries that the show is turning children gay. But I've got news for Fox: kids in Houston were turning gay way before Glee and even before Fox! And I was just one of them, even if I was a late bloomer. Two others were friends of mine in high school: my basketball- and softball-playing lesbian best friend (who kissed me!) and my New Wave, blue-eye shadow-wearing, multi-ear pierced, fashion-conscious Vietnamese boyfriend and prom date (whom I never kissed. We were Santana and Karofsky without actually acknowledging it!). But we never said anything, even if everyone else was whispering about it; silence was safety then, especially silence in your own heart. What we would have given for an accepting, celebratory show like "Glee," not just for its out characters but for its acceptance of all diversity--Asians, Jewish people, people in wheelchairs, overweight people, people with Down Syndrome. No, we had, a few years later, "90210," not a bastion of diversity, unless blonde and brunette, rich and not-quite-as-rich count.

But it got better. It's gotten so much better. On tv, in the schools, on the streets, on the law books. Yes, hate crimes happen with shocking regularity and LGBT suicides are still high--and internationally, the picture is bleak in many places like Uganda. But there has been improvement here--legal same-sex marriage, gay and lesbian adoption, Ellen, Chaz Bono,changes in the Episcopal and Presbyterian churches, the end of DADT, and "Glee," to name just a few--which shows it's possible. It does get better.

And if I ever made a video for It Gets Better, I'd start with our beautiful kids singing:

(Lady Gaga's "Born this Way," Glee version)

[Kurt:]
It doesn't matter if you love him, or capital H-I-M-M-M-M
Just put your paws up
'Cause you were born this way, baby

[Tina:]
My mama told me when I was young
We are all born superstars
She rolled my hair and put my lipstick on
In the glass of her boudoir

[Mercedes:]
"There's nothing wrong with lovin' who you are"
She said, "'Cause he made you perfect, babe"

[Mercedes with Tina:]
"So hold your head up girl and you'll go far,
Listen to me when I say"

[New Directions: Mercedes]
I'm beautiful in my way
'Cause God makes no mistakes
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

Don't hide yourself in regret
Just love yourself and you're set
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

[New Directions: Tina]
Ooo there ain't no other way
Baby I was born this way
Baby I was born this way (born this way)

Ooo there ain’t no other way
Baby I was born this way
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

[Kurt:]
Don't be a drag – just be a queen

[Tina:]
Don't be a drag – just be a queen

[Mercedes:]
Don't be a drag – just be a queen
Don't be!

[Tina:]
Give yourself prudence
And love your friends
Subway kid, rejoice your truth

In the religion of the insecure
I must be myself, respect my youth

[Mercedes:]
A different lover is not a sin
Believe capital H-I-M

[Mercedes with Tina:]

I love my life I love this record and
Mi amore vole fe yah (love needs faith)

[New Directions (with Mercedes):]
I'm beautiful in my way
'Cause God makes no mistakes
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

Don't hide yourself in regret
Just love yourself and you're set
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

[New Directions (with Tina):]
Ooo there ain't no other way
Baby I was born this way
Baby I was born this way

Ooo there ain’t no other way
Baby I was born this way
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

[Kurt:]
Don't be a drag, just be a queen
Whether you're broke or evergreen
You're black, white, beige, chola descent
You're lebanese, you're orient

Whether life's disabilities
Left you outcast, bullied, or teased
Rejoice and love yourself today
'Cause baby you were born this way

[Mercedes and Tina:]
No matter gay, straight, or bi
Lesbian, transgendered life
I'm on the right track baby
I was born to survive

No matter black, white or beige
Chola or orient made
I'm on the right track baby
I was born to be brave

[New Directions (with Tina leading & Mercedes on riffs):]
I'm beautiful in my way
'Cause God makes no mistakes
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

Don't hide yourself in regret
Just love yourself and you're set
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

Ooo there ain’t no other way
Baby I was born this way
Baby I was born this way

Ooo there ain’t no other way
Baby I was born this way
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way

I was born this way hey!
I was born this way hey!
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way hey!

I was born this way hey!
I was born this way hey!
I'm on the right track baby
I was born this way hey!

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