Taylor Swift is known for a lot of things. Her amazing songwriting abilities, her ridiculously catchy tunes, her love of cats, and recently, her easter egg hiding abilities. But, one thing she has never been known for is being politically active in the public sphere. In the past decade, Swift gained a reputation for being politically neutral. But, in recent months, the 10-time GRAMMY award winner has been singing an entirely different tune.
In October of 2018, the 29-year-old songwriter took to Instagram to write her first overtly political post. In it, she encouraged people to register to vote for the upcoming midterm elections. “I’m writing this post about the upcoming midterm elections on November 6th, in which I’ll be voting in the state of Tennessee. In the past, I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now.” Swift wrote.
Speaking out on Instagram
These statements were a far cry from the politically neutral Swift of previous years. Back in 2016, Swift was one of the few, female celebrities who didn’t publicly show their support for either Presidential candidate. Though Swift did post a picture of herself at the voting booths, she ultimately remained silent about what candidate would receive her vote. There was speculation that the singer did, in fact, vote for Hillary Clinton, as her sweater was similar in style to one that Clinton had worn several years prior. However, this was never confirmed by Swift herself.
The “ME!” singer went on to say “I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for the human rights I believe we all deserve in this country. I believe in the fight for LGBTQ rights, and that any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender is WRONG. I believe that the systemic racism we still see in this country towards people of color is terrifying, sickening and prevalent. I cannot vote for someone who will not be willing to fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love.”
Though it was only an Instagram post, Swift’s statement had a tremendous effect on voter registration. The songstress has a massive following of over 118 million on Instagram alone. When her fans saw her speaking out about politics, it urged them to get political as well. In fact, with just a simple statement, Swift managed to cause a massive spike in voter registration. Vote.org reported that they’d received no less than 65,000 registrations in the 24 hours immediately following the “Delicate” singer’s post.
And Swift has no plans to stop speaking out about her political beliefs. In a recent interview, Swift discussed what fans can expect from her upcoming, highly-anticipated, seventh album. “I definitely think there are political undertones in the new music I made. I’m not planning to stop encouraging young people to vote and to try to get them to talk about what’s going on in our country. I think that’s one of the most important things I could do.” Swift states.
It’s great to see that Swift has finally come to recognize the responsibility that comes along with having such a massive platform. We hope that she continues to use her power, privilege, and influence for worthy causes, and we can’t wait to hear what’s next for her musically.
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