The only person who likes Taylor Swift more than Taylor Swift is her lawyers; girl provides them with a lot of work. Taylor put her lawyers to work recently on a writer who wrote some things Taylor didn’t like regarding her popularity in the white supremacy community. Thanks to a little thing called free speech, that fight isn’t going so well for Taylor.
According to HuffPo, this all started after a piece titled “Swiftly to the alt-right: Taylor subtly gets the lower case kkk in formation” was published back in September on the left-leaning blog PopFront by writer Meghan Herning. The post was about Taylor’s increasing popularity with white supremacists and neo-Nazi types.
Meghan writes that Taylor’s recent single “Look What You Made Me Do” has served as a “subtle, quiet white support of a racial hierarchy.” Apparently white supremacists are really getting off on innocent white girl Taylor’s thinly-veiled message of aggressively taking revenge on the Kanye West who did her wrong. Meghan also calls for Taylor to speak up and denounce her white supremacist fan base.
Taylor has already sent one strongly-worded letter to the white supremacy community informing them she’s not drawing hearts around pictures of Hitler. And besides, speaking up against hate isn’t really Taylor’s thing. Now Taylor’s action plan involves killing the messenger. Last month, Taylor had her lawyer William J. Briggs send Meghan Herning a letter stating that the story was “provably false and defamatory,” and accusing Meghan of attacking her.
“It appears to be a malicious attack against Ms. Swift that goes to great lengths to portray Ms. Swift as some sort of white supremacist figurehead, which is a baseless fiction masquerading as fact and completely misrepresents Ms. Swift.”
The letter also defended Taylor Swift’s decision to stay quiet and keep her political affiliations to herself during the election last November.
Meghan shared the letter with the ACLU, who wasn’t feeling it at all. They consider what Meghan wrote to be a mix of political speech and critical commentary that falls under the protection of the First Amendment. ACLU attorney Michael Risher released a statement about Taylor’s lawsuit and slapped back at her for what the ACLU considers to be “intimidation tactics.”
“This is a completely unsupported attempt to suppress constitutionally protected speech. Intimidation tactics like these are unacceptable. Not in her wildest dreams can Ms. Swift use copyright law to suppress this exposure of a threat to constitutionally protected speech.
Criticism is never pleasant, but a celebrity has to shake it off, even if the critique may damage her reputation.”
I appreciate that the ACLU dropped so many not-subtle Taylor Swift song references. Taylor, on the other hand, is probably seething that they stopped just shy of a blatant album promo. “Even if the critique may damage her reputation…which drops November 10th!”
Taylor would be smart to confront this whole white supremacist popularity issue, because really, it’s not going to go away on its own. Whenever some clueless dum-dum chirps, “Why isn’t there a White Entertainment Television???“, I immediately picture a channel that plays nothing but Taylor Swift videos and reruns of How I Met Your Mother.