Fuse is celebrating Pride Month by looking at a variety of rising forces who are creating Future LGBTQ History before our eyes. Today we are honoring Lauren Jauregui, who is a strong leader for young women and men both as part of Fifth Harmony and on her own.
The singer is mostly known as one of members of 5H, one of the more exciting girl groups to rise in pop in recent years. The 20-year-old Miami native has always been a standout singer, thanks to her incredible husky and sensual tone that brings you back to the peak careers of Christina Aguilera and Alicia Keys. Jauregui also has a warm and funny personality that keeps everyone captivated.
Yet what makes the singer so special is that she completely owns who she is, no matter what anyone else may think. In the wake of the intense election season last fall, Jauregui wrote an open letter to Donald Trump voters where she came out as bisexual and also stood up for her fellow Cuban-Americans. She states with commendable pride and courage,
"Our 'political correctness' that your champion, Donald Trump, so pointedly disregarded throughout his entire campaign and now with the appointment of his advisors and other government officials, is the language we have worked tirelessly to establish to feel safe in a world that never stops reminding us we are minorities. I am a bisexual Cuban-American woman and I am so proud of it. I am proud to be part of a community that only projects love and education and the support of one another. I am proud to be the granddaughter and daughter of immigrants who were brave enough to leave their homes and come to a whole new world with a different language and culture and immerse themselves fearlessly to start a better life for themselves and their families.
I am proud to be a woman. Proud that the sex between my thighs provides a strength and resilience in me that only other women can feel, that my body curves in ways that allow me to create life within me, that my entire life is filled with adversity and doubt and people questioning my intelligence and my artistic potential and my expression of myself and my virtue and honor because I am too much woman. I am proud that I get to prove them all wrong. I am proud that I have to work even harder for it. I was raised to feel that I can do ANYTHING, and I will always believe that. I am proud to feel the whole spectrum of my feelings and I will gladly take the label of 'bitch' and 'problematic' for speaking my mind the same way any man would be admired and respected for doing. But, I will also extend the fullest hand of compassion and empathy for anyone labeling me as such."
The singer was well aware of the backlash she would receive from Trump supporters. But do you think she cared? Of course not! Her message was more important than their narrow-minded thoughts as she aimed to uplift and stand tall for people who may be struggling with their identity yet couldn't speak up. She was able to provide a much-needed voice.
Following the letter, Jauregui has come into her own, even doing an intimate photoshoot called "Bare With Me" with her then-girlfriend Lucy Vives. While the singer didn't knock everyone over the head with a flashy "I'M BISEXUAL!" sign, she genuinely opened her soul and gave fans access to her world. The photos are absolutely stunning, with Jauregui and Vives romantically posing by the swamps of New Orleans. Photographer Nicole Cartolano later explained her experience shooting the ladies to MTV:
“Both girls trusted me to photograph them together as sort of a coming-out, but they were nervous how their families would respond and the publicity they’d attract, especially from the Latin American community. ‘Bare With Me’ is a compromise which allowed us to describe what Lauren called ‘love in the 21st century.’ We felt like the way that these photographs are presented are very disarming, sensual, and empowering all at once. And they’re not provocative or with ill intent. ... It was important to use their voices to show the world that this is OK, this is acceptable, in the gentlest way possible.”
Jauregui has also become a fiery artist, stepping out to provide her incredible voice to solo collaborations. Back in December, she teamed up with pop duo Marian Hill for the chilled "Back to Me." And just a few weeks ago, the artist appeared on Halsey's "Strangers" single that was described as a "love song for the LGBT community." The ladies look back on past failed relationships while casually using same-sex pronouns with Jauregui singing on her verse: "She doesn't call me on the phone anymore / She's never listening, she says it's innocent / She doesn't let me have control anymore / I must've crossed a line, I must've lost my mind."
“I just love that Lauren and I are two women who have a mainstream pop presence doing a love song for the LGBTQ community,” Halsey commented in an interview with Zach Sang. “It’s unheard of. It’s very rare to see it from a female perspective...Sam Smith obviously made waves making records that were so human and so amazing and emotional that it didn't matter what your sexuality was, you just identified with what he was singing. That's kind of what I wanted to do with 'Strangers.'"
Lauren Jauregui's undeniable talent, unashamed self-pride, love for her fellow Fifth Harmony sisters and giving a comforting message to young women around the world that it's okay to be themselves solidifies her place in the future of LGBTQ history.
Tune in to Fuse and come back to Fuse.tv every day for profiles, videos, galleries and more on the individuals around the world who are creating Future LGBTQ History. Join the conversation with #FutureHistory and find Fuse in your area with our Channel Finder. Next, bring it way back with this classic Fuse interview when Fifth Harmony were fresh off The X-Factor USA: