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I smiled to myself while reading a news report that the hot singer Lady Gaga has urged Malaysian youth to protest against the gay lyric censorship of her latest digital best selling single “Born This Way”. Apparently the part of the lyric which goes like this ” No matter gay,straight or bi,lesbian,transsgendered life, I am on the right track baby”, has been garbled by Malaysian DJs playing the song on radio. This somehow came to her attention and must have riled her a bit. Her remarks on Malaysia are also posted on Youtube.

As if to support her, Malaysian Gay Rights Advocates also complain that the censorship is part of the ongoing discrimination they face in every day life.

Lady Gaga is a stage name for Stephani Germanotta, of an Italian-American heritage. She is described as an American pop singer and a song writer. She was brought up a Roman Catholic and came to prominence in 2008 with her music being a combination of glam rock and pop. Her songs delve into issues like gay rights and bisexuality and social status among others. She is also quite flamboyant in her dressing and her stage acts could be so outrageous that people have been known to complain against them. Put it this way, Lady Gaga will never be able to appear in a concert in Malaysia. Too bad guys!

Lady Gaga is flamboyant

She has a great following, nine million people follow her on Twitter! She won many music awards for her creative songs. In fact she was placed by TIME magazine among 100 most influential people in the world in 2010. Such an awesome celebrity!

Her general outlook in life is definitely against that of the mainstream society especially in countries such as Malaysia. Her latest single, “Born this way” which sells one million copies on iTune in five days is very catchy and her video is viewed by over 44 million people on Youtube where the lyric is there for everyone to listen to.

Malaysia’s rather draconian law on film and music censorship is well known in efforts to discourage “foreign dark culture”. But with the internet accessible anywhere and anytime, I cannot see the logic of this action. In Malaysia we have freedom of limited expression as most of our people are shackled by their beliefs and not able to accept a wider range of expression especially of sexuality as seen in the West.

Sorry Lady Gaga, it doesn’t look like there is such a thing as ” I am born this way” when it involves sexual preferences or outlook in my country. It is as if we do not accept our Creator’s creation!

It reminds me of an incident many years ago when I was a kid in a village. There was this human being whose name was Abdullah but everyone in the village called him Mak Lah (Mak is female gender as opposed to Pak Lah where Pak is the male gender). He wore female dresses, walked like a female,talked like a female (except for his coarse voice). His physical attributes were that of a man, bulky muscle and hints of a moustache above his lips. He would always be found in female company, and would wear his traditional “sarong” above his breast unlike a man at the waist level.

As a child of hardly eight years, I used to wonder about this person, neither a male nor female. I think you would call these characteristics as androgynous. Come to think of it that was what Lady Gaga says ” I like androgyny”. Anyway the best part of my true story comes after this.

One evening Mak Lah came over to my friend’s house because there was a storm and strong winds and he/she was scared to sleep in his/her house because it was rather dilapidated and rickety (Mak Lah was living alone). My friend’s parents allowed Mak Lah to sleep in their house. I cannot really remember why but I also ended up sleeping in my friend’s house. Early in the morning my friend and his giggling younger sister woke me up and asked me to come with them to where Mak Lah was sleeping. Somehow in the night Mak Lah’s “sarong” used as a thin blanket was pulled up his/her thighs and there the three of us looked in shock at Mak Lah’s strange looking private part. I never forget that sight till to this day.

I remember asking my late mother about why Mak Lah was neither girl nor boy and sheepishly told her about what I saw at my friend’s house. My Mother took me aside and gently said, and I will never forget this, ” He is born that way”.

Lady Gaga, you are on the right track baby!…… and I enjoyed your creative song immensely with all the lyrics.


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