You might have noticed that Taylor Swift is something of a celebrity enigma. She’s not what you call a recluse, but a lot of things we know about Taylor’s life and opinion come from inference and assumption. Take how, in 2016, people claimed she was voting for Hillary Clinton based on Taylor’s sweater, which sort of resembled a dress Hillary once wore but was also like the fashion choice of the season for waif-like blonde girls. We’re imparting upon Ms. Swift some Queen’s-broaches level of cloak-and-dagger sartorial commentary.
But Swift is silent no longer! Yes, like nearly every other entertainer and celebrity, it turns out she’s got a Democratic bent. What a jaw-dropping shock. Here, just for fun: try naming five current-generation famous people, off the top of your head only, that support Republicans but are not famous solely for their support of Republicans. Clint Eastwood, Charleston Heston, and the other members of the Desiccated Grandpa Guild don’t count.
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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. 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. Running for Senate in the state of Tennessee is a woman named Marsha Blackburn. As much as I have in the past and would like to continue voting for women in office, I cannot support Marsha Blackburn. Her voting record in Congress appalls and terrifies me. She voted against equal pay for women. She voted against the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which attempts to protect women from domestic violence, stalking, and date rape. She believes businesses have a right to refuse service to gay couples. She also believes they should not have the right to marry. These are not MY Tennessee values. I will be voting for Phil Bredesen for Senate and Jim Cooper for House of Representatives. Please, please educate yourself on the candidates running in your state and vote based on who most closely represents your values. For a lot of us, we may never find a candidate or party with whom we agree 100% on every issue, but we have to vote anyway. So many intelligent, thoughtful, self-possessed people have turned 18 in the past two years and now have the right and privilege to make their vote count. But first you need to register, which is quick and easy to do. October 9th is the LAST DAY to register to vote in the state of TN. Go to vote.org and you can find all the info. Happy Voting! ???
Taylor Swift, Accidental Alt-Right Cause Célèbre
The funny story is that Taylor Swift’s silence has been sort of taken as tacit support for Trump. She’s actually been called an “Aryan goddess” by more than one person. You know, because she’s blond, white, and wasn’t obviously a Democrat. That’s all it takes to be an Aryan goddess these days, apparently: inflation has really done a number on the quality of Aryan goddesses in today’s world, apparently.
Swift has been supported by everyone in the alt-right from literal Nazis to reactionaries of all stripes. It’s probably done wonders for recruitment numbers among the sweaty white male demographic. After all, they’ve long proven they will continue to assume girls are into them despite literally no interaction between the two of them. It would hardly be the first “misunderstand” members of 4chan had about how women work.
Predictably, the far right has been riven with the betrayal. How could this star, the one they called “our girl,” sell out to the left like that? All the not-talking about politics meant she was obviously agreeing with our politics! That’s how silence works, dummy!
This is the Story of a Cat
But how did it come to be that Taylor Swift is embraced by the alt-right, despite zero public or private interest? Surely it will not surprise you to discover that it’s kind of a funny story.
4chan seems to think that they named Taylor’s cat.
Of the many thousands of posts on 4chan one day, one post was soliciting cat names. In defiance of the board’s near-universal disdain of everything, it seems posters took it seriously and offered real names instead of Sir Cock’n’Balls or Lord Fortnite. Weirdly, Meredith made it pretty far in the running. AND GUESS WHO NAMED HER CAT MEREDITH MY DUDE.
Why, Ms. Swift, of course.
Be not dismayed that Taylor apparently named her cat several days before this alleged poll. And be not dismayed that, for this story to be true, it would require Taylor to actually use 4chan. And be not dismayed that she hardly gives off the appearance of your standard 4chan user: a bad-tempered B student with a victim complex.
In her becoming-a-real-adult moment, Swift has decided to publicly throw her support behind a Democrat in a close race. And we certainly appreciate the thought, but is it sad that her opinion on politics will cause more folks to vote than all the good arguments for voting in the world? Surely it says something that voter registration numbers ballooned in the wake of this reveal. But it doesn’t seem to say much good.
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Image by Jana Beamer