Amherst Wire

Taylor Swift makes a big statement

Within 24 hours, the state of Tennessee had over 160,000 new voters.

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Taylor Swift makes a big statement

Clarence Ji / Creative Commons

Clarence Ji / Creative Commons

Clarence Ji / Creative Commons

Kacey Connolly, Contributor

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International pop star Taylor Swift took to social media this month to voice her political opinion for the first time in her 12-year career, increasing Tennessee’s new voter count by over 160,000 people.

Swift posted a picture of herself on her Instagram page, with a lengthy caption explaining that recent events in her personal life and world events over the past two years have changed her stance about expressing her political opinion.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BopoXpYnCes/?taken-by=taylorswift

In her caption, Swift addressed two Tennessee candidates running in the upcoming midterm elections. She denounced Marsha Blackburn, saying she’d like to support women in office, but cannot support Blackburn due to her voting history in Congress.

Swift explained that Blackburn voted against reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act, believes businesses have a right to refuse service to gay couples and believes that gay and lesbian couples should not have the right to marriage.

Swift closed her caption advising voters to elect Phil Bredesen for Tennessee State Senate and Jim Cooper for the House of Representatives. She urged people to educate themselves on the running candidates and singled out young adults to register to vote.

Within 24 hours, over 160,000 new voters registered in Tennessee. With a fan base and platform as large as her’s, it was clear that Swift’s stance would have a big impact. The support Swift received from other celebrities who shared her original piece broadened the audience spectrum even more.

Celebrities, ranging from Modern Family’s Sarah Hyland, liberal activist and actress Alyssa Milano and even young Teen Wolf star Dylan Sprayberry, commented in support of Swift’s political post.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BotdakFnbRl/?taken-by=dylansprayberry

Swift has always been notorious for keeping quiet about her political beliefs. In a 2012 interview with Time magazine, Swift said, “I don’t talk about politics because it might influence other people. And I don’t think that I know enough yet in life to be telling people who to vote for.”

Six years and a new president later, Swift has changed her mind. In Swift’s recent post, she states, “I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for human rights I believe we all deserve in this country.” She strongly expresses her belief in LGBTQ rights, gender equality and racial equality.

As Swift’s post  went viral, many compared her with Kanye West.

New York Times columnist Tariro Mzezewa shared a similar opinion in an article contrasting the two celebrities. She notes that West has gone from racial equality advocate to Trump’s “brother,” while Swift has broken her silence to take a Democratic stance.

At the end of day, the world balances itself out. For every Democratic Taylor Swift Instagram post, there’s always a Kanye West in a red Make America Great Again hat.

Email Kacey at [email protected]

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Taylor Swift makes a big statement