Rita Ora Apologizes After "Girls" Backlash

Rita Ora Apologizes After "Girls" Backlash
Four days after releasing her new single "Girls," Rita Ora has issued an apology to those who felt the song's lyrics were "tone-deaf" and not reflective of the LGBTQ+ community.

The track, which features Cardi B, Charli XCX and Bebe Rexha, had been described by Ora as "a real gender-fluid freedom record," though it was clear after the song's release that artists in the LGBTQ+ community did not feel the same way. 

Taking to Twitter, Kehlani wrote that "every artist on the song is fantastic...but this isn't about talent. it's about choice," adding that the song used "many awkward slurs, quotes, and moments that were like 'word? word."

She continued, "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."

Charlotte Day Wilson tweeted that "the queer experience has juuust a bit more depth to it than a drunken, silly kiss or a threesome every now and then. Stop delegitimizing our culture and capitalizing off it."

Singer Hayley Kiyoko also posted that the song's messaging "just fuels the male gaze while marginalizing the idea of women loving women. I know this wasn't the intention of the artists on the song, but it's the lack of consideration behind these lyrics that really get me. I don't need to drink wine to kiss girls; I've loved women my entire life."

In her apology, Ora noted that the song "was written to represent my truth and is an accurate account of a very real and honest experience in my life. I have had romantic relationships with women and men throughout my life and this is my personal journey."

She continued, "I am sorry how I expressed myself in my song has hurt anyone. I would never intentionally cause harm to other LGBTQ+ people or anyone. Looking forward, I hope that continuing to express myself through my art will empower my fans to feel as proud of themselves as I'm learning to feel about who I am. I'm ever thankful to my fans for teaching me to love myself no matter what. I have strived to be a contributor to the LGBTQ+ community throughout my entire career and always will be."

Find Ora's apology below.