And her philanthropy isn't done just with money. Celebrities can write checks all they want, but until they start campaigns, make tour stops and do everything in their power to make sure the cause is benefited, like Gaga did with her DADT repel plea, they'll never be true philanthropists. Most celebrities' desire isn't to make humanity better; it's to get good publicity.
While Gaga does good work through her philanthropy, she also makes sure that even in her career, her messages are heard.
Obviously her enormous hit single "Born This Way," the titular song from her sophomore album, comes to mind in this regard. It's an anthem for members of the LGBTQ community and minorities in general.
But it's her other songs such as "Hair" and "The Edge of Glory" that get across messages to everyone. This shows that Gaga's desire isn't just to help a specific community but every individual out there.
While her brand of electronic pop music is definitely niche, her messages aren't. "Hair" is about the importance of identity, particularly in adolescents, and "The Edge of Glory" is about making the most of your time on Earth.
"Don't be insecure if your heart is pure/You're still good to me/If you're a bad kid baby," she sings in "Bad Kids." Gaga would certainly know how it feels to be a bad kid, considering she was a drug addict as a teen.
That is another reason why I admire her. She isn't writing and singing these songs to reach out to people in hopes they'll feel better, she's actually been in their shoes and knows she can make them feel better.
Without Gaga, I honestly wouldn't have the strength to be open about my sexuality or have the common sense to realize that being gay isn't something that defines me as a person. Without Gaga, I wouldn't have the courage to brush off being called a faggot or ignore people quoting the Bible at me and urging me to "pray away the gay."
Without Gaga, I don't know if I'd even be here.
The only people who know how tough it is to be a minority are minorities. The straight, white, religious person likely will completely miss my point and go straight to thinking Gaga is some sort of deviant because she understands and sympathizes (dare I say encourage?) with teenage rebellion.
They are the people who don't realize how hard it is to be different. Society has changed, but we still have racism and bi-, trans- and homophobia. Even women are still treated with prejudice, whether they realize it or not.
I know a lot of people aren't going to agree with my statements. I know that when this piece is posted online, there will be at least one person who feels the need to counter my every claim.
But I also know that no matter what, there will be someone out there who not only feels my pain but is fighting to end it. And that person is Lady Gaga.