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Hayley Kiyoko and Kehlani criticise Rita Ora’s ‘tone-deaf’ and ‘harmful’ single ‘Girls’
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Pop singer Hayley Kiyoko and R&B artist Kehlani have criticised Rita Ora‘s “downright tone-deaf” new single ‘Girls’

Released yesterday (March 11), the track sees Ora team up with Cardi B, Charli XCX and Bebe Rexha. During the track, the artists reference their sexual fantasies using the “she/her” pronouns.

Now, Kiyoko has released a statement claiming that the song “does more harm than good for the LGBTQ+ community”. Kehlani has also hit out at its “harmful lyrics”.

“There is a new song that came out today featuring a handful of well-known pop artists that has me overwhelmed with thoughts,” Kiyoko begins her post.

She goes on to say how she usually fully supports artists “who freely express themselves” and those “who are opening up more and more about their sexual identities”.

However, Kiyoto then states that “every so often there come certain songs with messaging that is just downright tone-deaf, which does more harm than good for the LGBTQ+ community. A song like [‘Girls’] just fuels the male gaze while marginalizing the idea of women loving women.”

Real talk ???? pic.twitter.com/9EbZd5dYZq

— Hayley Kiyoko (@HayleyKiyoko) May 11, 2018

Referring directly to the chorus’ lyrics the singer says: “I don’t need to drink wine to kiss girls; I’ve loved women my entire life.”

She adds: “This type of message is dangerous because it completely it completely belittles and invalidates the pure feeling of an entire community. I feel I have a responsibility to protect that whenever possible.”

Kiyoko signs off by saying: “We can and should do better.”

Kehlani later aired her thoughts on the track, tweeting: “hate to be THAT guy but there were many awkward slurs, quotes, and moments that were like ‘word? word”.

She then says that the criticism isn’t personal to the artists featured on the single. “I have an incredible song out with one of the artists,” she added, “and would love to work with the other three as well. & have met them all and respect them.”

“there. were. harmful. lyrics. period.”

Check out Kehlani’s posts below:

every artist on the song is fantastic, and very much loved and supported by me… by all of us. but this isn’t about talent. it’s about choice.

— Kehlani (@Kehlani) May 11, 2018

hate to be THAT guy but there were many awkward slurs, quotes, and moments that were like “word? word”

— Kehlani (@Kehlani) May 11, 2018

mmm i never assumed it was for men lol just think certain quotes weren’t progressive. done speaking about it now tho cheers everyone happy friday. https://t.co/bRVj0tKD2j

— Kehlani (@Kehlani) May 11, 2018

let’s get into it my love. i didn’t write distraction about needing a woman to be a distraction because i wouldn’t take a woman seriously because i am not queer. i wrote about wanting a distraction from my career, but not having enough time for a relationship. “sis” https://t.co/4iGaV3qfou

— Kehlani (@Kehlani) May 11, 2018

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and don’t make this personal.

i have an incredible song out with one of the artists, and would love to work with the other three as well. & have met them all and respect them.

there. were. harmful. lyrics. period. love y’all. ????

— Kehlani (@Kehlani) May 11, 2018

Rita Ora previously described the track as “a real gender-fluid freedom record”.

Meanwhile, Charli XCX debuted a new song while supporting Taylor Swift earlier this week. “This is a brand new song,” she told the crowd. “I’ve never played it before ever! It’s [called] ‘5 In The Morning’.”

12/05/2018 12:03:44
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