Lil Nas X has defended Madonna after she was slammed for comparing his already-iconic awards show kiss to her own.
Lil Nas X shared a steamy kiss with a dancer during his Egyptian-themed performance of “Montero (Call Me By Your Name) at the BET Awards 2021 on Sunday (27 June).
Following the performance, Madonna took to Instagram to post a side-by-side image comparing his kiss to her own with Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera at the MTV VMAs in 2003. She captioned the story: “#DidItFirst.”
Madonna was heavily criticised for attempting to make the moment about herself, and for comparing her queer-baiting performance to a gay artist defiantly celebrating his sexuality in an industry that has been less-than-welcoming to LGBT+ folk.
Some referenced how her song “Vogue” lifted from Black and Latinx ballroom culture, “whitewashing” it in the process.
Amid fan backlash, Lil Nas X clarified that he and Madonna “are friends” and that it was “just a joke”.
After all, Madonna and Lil Nas X are known to be friends. They once shared beers and banter before duetting “Old Town Road” together during Madonna’s Madame X tour.
Other users sought to defend the pop megastar, arguing that the Instagram story was a joke while re-training focus back to Madonna’s decades-long contributions to LGBT+ advocacy.
In a series of tweets, he said that he would continue to express his sexuality even if it makes others “uncomfortable”.
“Y’all live your lives trying your best to appease straight ppl,” he wrote.
“Y’all are uncomfortable with what I do because y’all are afraid they will be uncomfortable with you.
“Work on yourselves, I love who I am and whatever I decide to do. Get there.”