One of pop music’s youngest stars is here to teach all of us a lesson. Billie Eilish’s body-shaming protest took place during a concert on March 9. The concert at the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida marked Billie’s very first tour stop in the U.S. The 18-year-old singer wasn’t going to let the momentous event pass up without using her platform to share an important response to the body-shamers she’s faced in her young career.
Billie, who has used her songs lyrics to bring mental health awareness and held even more meaningful performances at the Grammys and the Oscars, is no stranger to making a statement. Still, few could expect the powerful message that she decided to share as part of her concert. Billie’s tour includes a video where the star strips down to her bra—a surprising sight, considering that Billie has spoken out in the past about wearing baggy clothing purposefully to cover her body.
“Some people hate what I wear, some people praise it, some people use it to shame others, some people use it to shame me, but I feel you watching—always—and nothing I do goes unseen,” she said in a monologue for the video.
She continued, “So while I feel your stares, your disapproval or your sigh of relief, if I lived by them, I’d never be able to move. Would you like me to be smaller? Weaker? Softer? Taller? Would you like me to be quiet? Do my shoulders provoke you? Does my chest? Am I my stomach? My hips? The body I was born with, is it not what you wanted?”
“If I wear what is comfortable, I am not a woman. If I shed the layers, I’m a slut. Though you’ve never seen my body, you still judge it and judge me for it. Why?” she added. “We make assumptions about people based on their size. We decide who they are, we decide what they’re worth. If I wear more, if I wear less, who decides what that makes me? What that means? Is my value based only on your perception? Or is your opinion of me not my responsibility?”
Fans everywhere are praising the young star for her bravery and honesty on stage. That even includes Hustlers star Jennifer Lopez, who introduced Billie to her 12-year-old daughter, Emme, and couldn’t help but post about it on Instagram. “When Emme met Billie 💚💚💚😭.”