“Same Love” by Macklemore, Ryan Lewis and Mary Lambert makes an abundance of suggestions both to the government and to society as a whole about LGBTQ+ rights. In 2013, when the song was written, gay marriage was not yet legalized in all 50 states. Therefore, what the song is calling for is not only tolerance from the public, but also from officials making these decisions (that ultimately don’t affect them directly).

It is abundantly clear in the lyrics what these artists want and the messages they are sending.

“When I was in the third grade I thought that I was gay / ’cause I could draw, my uncle was, and I kept my room straight”

This line addresses the stereotypes that are associated with homosexuality and the qualities that gay people are “supposed” to have.

“The right-wing conservatives think it’s a decision / And you can be cured with some treatment and religion”

This line addresses the idea that people, namely conservatives, think being gay is not something that is natural or inherent and that it can be cured, and should be cured.

“And ‘God loves all his children’ is somehow forgotten / But we paraphrase a book written thirty-five-hundred years ago”

In this line, Macklemore is calling out the Catholic church and their denouncement of the gay population and their stance on gay marriage. This is based on how people interpret the bible, and it is interesting, because religious people claim to love everybody.

“‘Man, that’s gay” gets dropped on the daily / We’ve become so numb to what we’re saying”

These lines are directed toward society as a whole, as people take the word gay and associate it with something bad, thus perpetuating the bad attitude toward the LGBTQ+ community. It is done subconsciously, and that is the problem.

“No freedom ’til we’re equal, damn right I support it”

Here, Macklemore is expressing his status as an ally to the LGBTQ+ community and the fact that we are not free until we are all free, meaning that we are not free until everyone who wants to be married has the ability to be married.

“And a certificate on paper isn’t gonna solve it all / But it’s a damn good place to start / No law is gonna change us / We have to change us”

The artists are calling for the legalization of gay marriage, but that’s not all. Along with that, society needs to be more tolerant of this marginalized community. This reminds me of civil rights in the fact that in the 60’s, slavery had been abolished for years, but the mentality that black people are lesser remained, thus perpetuating overt racism.

After breaking down the lyrics, it is clear that Macklemore, Ryan Lewis and Mary Lambert are calling for change within the government, the church and mainstream culture as a whole. Most of the critiques they’re making are pretty obvious, which is an effective way to get their messages across.

What the artists are mostly asking for aside from the legalization of gay marriage is tolerance.

Check out the full lyrics here.