In Defense of Taylor Swift
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In Defense of Taylor Swift

Are you ready for it?

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In Defense of Taylor Swift
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Unless you've been living under a rock for the past few months, you know the amazing news: Taylor Swift is about to drop a brand-new album after three years of no new releases since her last album, 1989. Four songs have been released so far: ...Ready For it?, Look What You Made Me Do, Gorgeous, and Call It What You Want. Reviews of the songs themselves have been mixed, but not as much as the reviews of the New Taylor. Taylor has been called a "snake" for years (essentially since the Kimye incident), but her critics have been out in full force since Look What You Made Me Do dropped a couple weeks ago. People are saying she needs to stop playing the victim, she needs to own up to what she's done wrong, she essentially needs to stay the same as she was when she first entered the music world at sixteen years old.

Well, I'm here to say: haters gonna hate. *insert shrugging person emoji*

I love the New Taylor. I was right around 10 when Our Song came out, and I was a fan from the first listen. I followed her from Taylor Swift to Speak Now to Red to 1989 and now to reputation. I've grown up with Taylor, and I've changed a lot in the 12-ish years since that first album came out. I've loved and lost and hurt and screamed and cried and laughed and lived my life, just like she has. She just had to do all of that in front of the paparazzi, in front of a world just waiting for her to fail.

Taylor is no longer playing the victim. Taylor is owning what she's done wrong, but not without calling out people from her past on what they've done to her. ("Maybe I got mine, but you'll all get yours.") Taylor has gotten the short end of the stick more often than not because of the "good girl next door" persona she's had for years. And of course that's how she was labeled - she was a teenager breaking out into the country music scene, singing about high school romances. She was destined to be branded a little girl. But as she grew up, she outgrew that label. She made mistakes. She did things she shouldn't have. Who hasn't in their teens and early twenties? I certainly haven't done much better for myself in the last few years.

Taylor generally takes two years off between albums while she tours and works on the next one. But this time, she took three, and the last year or so, she's been radio silent on social media. She's been working on herself, spending time with Meredith and Olivia and her new boyfriend Joe Alwyn, just living her life how she sees fit. She's one of the most wildly successful artists of our generation - she deserves some time off. Lest we forget, she just recently was involved in a sexual assault case; I don't know about you, but I would need a lot of time after something like that too. Her name was plastered all over the Internet and in the news, which is nothing new for Taylor Swift, but this time was different. This time she *literally* was the victim, and all she got were snide comments like "Well, why was she wearing that?" and "It was no big deal, I don't know why she has to be so dramatic." Taylor Swift stood up for sexual assault victims everywhere, and all she got was hate.

Taylor deserves more than that.

I read on Twitter that Call It What You Want is Love Story "after a few drinks," and the same has been said for Gorgeous and Enchanted. Essentially, people are saying her songs have grown much more mature, and some are angry about this. I happen to love it. It's like talking to someone you've been friends with since middle school: you've both matured and your views and lives have changed, but you're still the same people, so your brain still works in a similar way. Taylor's songs have similar themes and similar metaphors because she is still the same person, albeit older and wiser, but still the Taylor we grew up blasting in our cars in high school about the boy in our math class that wouldn't ask us to Homecoming. Now we blast new Taylor about the frat boy that won't return our texts.

Whether you love or hate her new music, you have to agree that Taylor has matured, and so has her music. She has a right to grow, a right to expand her horizons, a right to live her life how she sees fit, a right to explore herself as a musician and as a person.

All the remains is one more question: Are you ready for it?

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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