Lady Gaga is featured on the December cover of Glamour Magazine as one of their Women of the Year, looking impossibly thin and perfect like all celebrities do. But the singer says she takes issue with the way she is portrayed, not only because of the way she looks, but because she thinks the real cover girl was another honoree: Malala Yousafzai, the 16-year old Pakistani activist who was shot in the head by members of the Taliban last year because she was fighting for the education of females in her country.
“Who really belongs on the cover is not me. If I could forfeit my Glamour cover, I would give it to Malala,” she said at the awards ceremony in New York on Monday night. “You’re so inspiring, so young and so brilliant. Malala used her voice, so I’m going to use mine … The picture, which I’m very grateful for and very happy to be on this cover, I felt it was too beautiful. I felt my skin looked too perfect, and my hair looked too soft. This is not usually how I dress or how I carry myself.”
Gaga said she wanted to stress to her fans–especially impressionable young girls–that the magazine covers they see every day are not representational of real life.
“I believe my true mission is to inspire young people to fight back against forces that make them feel like they’re not beautiful or important,” she said. “I do not look like this when I wake up in the morning…It is fair to write about the change in your magazines. But what I want to see is the change on your covers … When the covers change, that’s when culture changes.”
Gaga’s words weren’t taken as an insult by the magazine, which issued a statement about her speech.
“We love the cover — which captures exactly the way Gaga looked at our shoot — but we think her bigger point, that women like Malala Yousafzai are also cover-worthy, is RIGHT ON, and we couldn’t agree more. We’re proud of the diversity of women we show on our pages, and the diversity of opinions they represent — frankly, Gaga’s willingness to challenge how American institutions think is a major reason we honored her to begin with.”