Lady Gaga is further solidifying the legacy left by her hit track “Born This Way.”
On Sunday, the “Bad Romance” singer made a surprise in-person appearance in West Hollywood as local officials granted her a key to the city, officially declaring May 23 as Born This Way Day. The prestigious honor comes alongside the 10-year anniversary of Gaga’s Born This Way album’s release, which boasts the message of LGBTQ pride and acceptance.
“You’ve been the motherf*****g key to my heart for a long time,” the artist told the crowd as they cheered on. “I’ll honor this and I’ll cherish this, and I promise that I’ll always be here for this day...to celebrate with you. To feel joy with you, to cry with you, to laugh with you. Because you know what we are? We’re poets and we’re just talking to each other.”
When speaking about the decision to honor Gaga, Mayor Lindsey P. Horvath told the WeHo Times that “through her music and activism, Lady Gaga has become a cultural icon for our generation.”
“The anthem ‘Born This Way’ has become an out-and-proud declarative stance for countless LGBTQ people,” she said. “The Born This Way Foundation fosters honest conversations about mental health with young people and seeks to eradicate the st igma around mental health struggles. I’m overjoyed to declare today ‘Born This Way Day’ and, on behalf of the entire City Council, give a Key to the City to Lady Gaga as we launch Pride this year in West Hollywood!”
Clearly honored by the entire experience, Gaga later went on to post photos on Instagram from the celebration, showing off the “Born This Way” street art installation and writing even more about the meaning behind her 2011 release.
“Born This Way, my song and album, were inspired by Carl Bean, a gay black religious activist who preached, sung and wrote about being ‘Born This Way,’” she wrote. “Notably his early work was in 1975, 11 years before I was born. Thank you for decades of relentless love, bravery, and a reason to sing,” she wrote in the caption. ”So we can all feel joy, because we deserve joy. Because we deserve the right to inspire tolerance, acceptance, and freedom for all.”