Does Kelly Osbourne bully people and get paid for it? That’s the argument that Lady Gaga made when Kelly accused Gaga of not controlling her fans, who reportedly harassed her on Twitter. It turned into a battle of magazine quotes, open letters and even Sharon Osbourne got involved. C’mon, girls, cut this crap out.
Here’s how it started. Kelly Osbourne said in an interview that Lady Gaga’s fans, affectionately dubbed Little Monsters, bully her online, usually about her weight–something she’s struggled with for a while. (For the record, I think she looks great, and I love her purple hair to pieces.) Here’s what she had to say: “I’m the thinnest I’ve ever been and the healthiest I’ve ever been,” she said. “I get called fat all the time. A big fat whore.” So she’s being called fat and slut shamed at the same time? Awesome. She added, “Lady Gaga’s fans are the worst. They’ve said I should kill myself, that they hope I get raped. I mean it’s crazy, but I’ve had this all my life and I just try and ignore it.”
First of all, no one should have to deal with that. Ever. Anyone who wishes rape or suicide on anyone has real issues and should probably hop onto Lady Gaga’s Born Brave Bus to get themselves some help.
Lady Gaga fired back at Kelly Osbourne’s bullying allegations, and she made a pretty valid point: People watch Kelly Osbourne bully other people every week on Fashion Police. Here’s her letter:
While I wish you had reached out to me personally, as the head of the Born This Way foundation with my mother Cynthia we would like to respond. Everyday, through my music and public voice I choose to be positive and work towards a kinder and braver world with our community of followers. I encourage them to ignore criticism, stand up to bullies, know their own value and see that we are all the same and no one person is worth more than another. I know I’m perceived as a wild child, but in reality I am woman that deeply cares for humanity. I have empathy for you Kelly, but I feel it culturally important to note that you have chosen a less compassionate path. Your work on E! with the Fashion Police is rooted in criticism, judgment, and rating people’s beauty against one another. “Appearance” is the most used reason for bullying in the world. Your show breeds negativity, and over the years has even become comedic in nature. It glorifies you and Joan Rivers pointing in the camera, laughing, and making jokes about artists and celebrities as if we are zoo animals. What about your body revolution? It used to make me truly sad when I would hear people talk about your weight when you were younger, as I was bullied too. To see you blossoming into a beautiful slender woman who makes fun of others for a living is astounding. Why not help others? Why not defend others who are bullied for their image and share your story? I am pointing this out not to take a crack at your character, as we’ve met before and you’re lovely. However, I urge you to take responsibility and accountability for the example that you are setting for young people. They look up to you because you are famous, and if you treat others that way on TV, many adolescents at home on twitter assume your actions are acceptable: well if she does it, why can’t I? I cannot control my fans, and I discourage them from any negativity and violence, because that is wrong and hurtful — and I do feel badly that your feelings were hurt. However, we can all do our part in the media to set a standard of respect, compassion, and love. I wish for you to be treated with the kindness and respect that everyone deserves. While some of my fans have learning to do, most of them share the same values as I, and it’s what bonds us together. And that bond is strong.
Gaga and Cynthia
PS. And to any media or celebrities that happen to find this letter in their path, I hope you, too, consider the power of your voices. Lets work together and make 2013 a year of unity.
Basically, Lady Gaga politely called Kelly Osbourne out on her hypocrisy. It’s also worth it to note that in the press, we’ve seen Kelly Osbourne bully others, including Christina Aguilera, about their weight–and she even said Lady Gaga may have been pregnant when she was spotted looking a bit fuller than we’re used to seeing her. To be fair, that may not have been deliberately mean–it may have just been a guess–but why is she talking about anyone else’s weight when she knows how terrible it feels?
Of course, Kelly’s mom Sharon got in on the mix, releasing a letter of her own to criticize Lady Gaga for wearing fur and dresses made of raw meat. Sharon also says that the Kelly Osbourne bully we see on Fashion Police is representative of “the real world.” (You can read the full letter here.)
For the record, I think wearing fur is dumb because it’s usually not even pretty enough to justify skinning an animal for it, and I can’t even imagine the health risks associated with having raw meat all over you. But Sharon Osbourne is missing the point and talking in circles. While it’d be awesome if everyone respected all life equally, Lady Gaga’s point was about seeing Kelly Osbourne bully other people. How are we supposed to extend courtesy and love to animals if we can’t even tolerate each other?
Gaga never encouraged her fans to bully anyone ever. It’s something a few particularly disturbed Little Monsters did on their own free will, earning the “Little Monster” nickname for all the wrong reasons. She discourages this behavior, but she can’t be a babysitter.
The fact is, it’s horrible that Kelly Osbourne is bullied by anyone, be it Lady Gaga’s fans, Joan Rivers on a bad day, or strangers online. But the fact that she makes a living promoting similar behavior instead of rising above it and doing something to prevent it from happening to anyone else is sad. Most of the time Fashion Police isn’t even that entertaining, which is astounding when you consider that not only is Kelly on the panel, but so is one of the greatest female comedians ever. It just seems too easy, too thoughtless, and too cheap to pick on people for what they look like–especially when you’ve dealt with it yourself.
Is Lady Gaga looking for attention? Yes. She usually is. But she’s also bringing awareness to a bigger problem, and that’s commendable. It sounds like Kelly and Sharon are just a little upset that in this case, she’s right.
Do you think Kelly Osbourne is a bully? Do you think Lady Gaga, Sharon Osbourne or Kelly Osbourne is right in this drama? Tell us in the comments!