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‘I was born to be brave’

Contest: We asked monsters all over the world about equality, how they can make a difference and why were they born this way. Here’s what they told us.

Contest: We asked monsters all over the world about equality, how they can make a difference and why were they born this way. Here’s what they told us.

Editorial assistant Jeroen Engelen, 20

“Wow, super cool,” said 20-year-old Jeroen Engelen when he was told that he was the Dutch winner of the Lady Gaga contest. Metro asked him a few more things about his love for Lady Gaga.

Why were you born this way?

My entry is very ambiguous. It’s a little story, actually, where I tell how I’ve become a fan. One day I received a light from outer space, from some sort of Goddess. The reason why I’m born this way, is that I use this light. I’ve given it a place, but it keeps changing, it’s getting bigger. Lady Gaga is an inspiration to me, her music has made me into what I am now. Every Gaga song has made me stronger. I’m creative, I’m schooled in graphic design. Lady Gaga motivates me in what I create myself.

What does an equal world look like to you?

That would be a world where everyone respects each other. Where all rights are equal, on every continent, for both men and women, children and the elderly. And where there’s no war. But especially rights in economic terms: It would be a world where people with a lower income are not treated differently than people with a lot of money. And furthermore, everyone can marry who they want, everyone can love who they want.

How long have you been a fan?

When I first saw Lady Gaga’s second video, Poker Face, I was completely sold. I had been waiting for her! I didn’t know why exactly, but she was inspiring. And she still is. I’ve visited every concert and I follow her every move.

Falko De Bolster


“At the end of the day we are all inter-connected to some degree. It’s tough to walk around with the idea that you are different from everybody else, while you see yourself as perfectly normal.”

Lyle Reimer, 33


“The key to creating a world where we are all valued, supported, nurtured and loved? Recognize that we’re all the same.”

Maude Larose, 18


“Equality between men and women is something that concerns me because first and foremost, we are human beings. A woman is worth as much as a man.”

Jeimmy Romina Carroza Allup, 22


“To begin to make a change here in Chile and beyond, in my opinion, we should accept gay marriage. It would be a good start to begin to open Chilean people’s minds.”

Josef Neumann, 18


“People rarely talk about homosexuals in a positive way. It is still taboo to many. I talk to people so they can know us better. I don’t hide my sexuality ... Everybody should be proud of who he or she loves.”

Jakob Kolda, 21


“I think it’s important to have spokespeople. People who dare to come to the forefront. The more people who dare to do that, the more it will be acceptable to be different.”

César Cajas, 19


“I want to make people feel secure, not afraid, not alone. I want to help people break the walls of fear. Without racism, homophobia, and hate, this planet would be paradise.”

Joanna Tzortzis, 20


“Growing up in a multicultural environment taught me tolerance. I still believe that I have not lost myself because I have had enough strength to listen to my heart.”

Nina Alem Sebbagh, 15


“We are all born to accomplish a mission on Earth. This is not an easy task. Everyone will have his or her share of suffering, happiness, love ... It is our destiny!”

Garifallia-Elizabeth Deligianni, 20


“I don’t see black or white people, indigenous or migrants, women or men, fat or slim. What we need to see is that all of us are people.”

Jorge Andrés Zamora, 16


“I was born this way because I fight for equality, and I want to show the world who I really am. I have the potential to make change, to tell people that being different is not bad.”

Gregory Wong, 32


“I was born to be the man loving my lady … and now I’m a daddy!”

Flóra Németh, 21


“(Young people)are very much open, and I think this is good. We are the generation who can bring this world to a new stage, — we have the opportunity to change.”

Job Favela, 27


“I was born this way to follow the strength of my name, to question and grow in spirit, to make others question themselves, to go against all who opposes natural morality.”

Tiago José Silva Eugénio, 16


“People do not accept me. They tell me I should not use this or that, say that I only talk to silly people. Gaga made me realize that all of this is only a phase of my life.”

Evgenya Zakharova, 23


“I care a lot about inequality in family relationships. The future of our children worries me the most. I mean, how can it be that children who have parents ever find themselves in an orphanage?”

Petsy von Köhler, 22


“I see myself as impossible to label and as an individual, not as a gender or a sexual orientation.”

Ashley Gagnon, 22


“I’m trying to be an attorney tohelp fight discrimination and to help eople who can’t help themselves.”

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