Taylor Swift has been denounced by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) after she issued a warning letter to a blogger who accused the singer of upholding the white supremacy movement.
It all started when Meghan Herning wrote a piece titled "Swiftly to the alt-right: Taylor subtly gets the lower case kkk in formation" on a little-known blog in California called PopFront. The blog post, which was published on 24 October, makes the case of how Swift has been embraced as a white power figure by her far-right fans and urges her on to condemn these white supremacists.
Offering a personal analysis of Swift's single from her new album Reputation, Herning explains: "Taylor's lyrics in Look What You Made Me Do seem to play to the same subtle, quiet white support of a racial hierarchy. Many on the alt-right see the song as part of a "re-awakening," in line with Trump's rise. At one point in the accompanying music video, Taylor lords over an army of models from a podium, akin to what Hitler had in Nazis Germany. The similarities are uncanny and unsettling."
Swift's legal team have sent a letter to Herning instructing her to retract the post. It called the story as being "replete with demonstrable and offensive falsehoods which bear no relation to reality or the truth about Ms. Swift." The letter went on to state that Swift is "prepared to proceed with litigation" if the story isn't removed.
This move has received harsh criticism from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). They responded with their own letter insisting that PopFront would not be removing the article. The letter stated: "The blog post is a mix of core political speech and critical commentary; it discusses current politics in this country, the recent rise of white supremacy, and the fact that some white supremacists have apparently embraced Ms. Swift, along with a critical interpretation of some of Ms. Swift's music, lyrics, and videos,"
This isn't the first time that Swift has courted a controversy of this nature. In 2013, her lawyer had to send a warning letter to Pinterest when a teenager named Emily Pattinson started spreading memes which had Swift's photos alongside quotes by Adolf Hitler on the popular social media site.
NPR wrote a condemning article titled "Taylor Swift Is Dreaming Of A Very White Africa" about Swift's Wildest Dream video proclaiming: "she [Swift] packages our continent as the backdrop for her romantic songs devoid of any African person or storyline, and she sets the video in a time when the people depicted by Swift and her co-stars killed, dehumanized and traumatized millions of Africans. That is beyond problematic."
Renowned feminist Camille Paglia has also referred to the singer as an "obnoxious Nazi Barbie" whose "twinkly persona is such a scary flashback to the fascist blondes who ruled the social scene during my youth".
An article on Broadly reveals how a white supremacist blog called the Daily Stormer, had previously tried to establish Swift as an "Aryan goddess" and that the pop star is "secretly a Nazi and is simply waiting for the time when Donald Trump makes it safe for her to come out and announce her Aryan agenda to the world".
Up until this spat with the Blank Space singer, PopFront, which only has 159 followers on Twitter, was all but an obscure blog. At the moment, their Twitterfeed is flooded with news about this dispute.
Twitterati was divided in their opinion as some people started slamming Swift further:
while other showed full support of the singer: