Kanye-Trump alliance backfires: Taylor Swift dedicates 6th album to Black Lives Matter
MANHATTAN — The Kanye-Taylor feud escalated Thursday with Swift taking to Instagram to announce she's dedicating her sixth album to Black Lives Matter, a move that pop music pundits are interpreting as a "major rebuke to Kanye."
It all began in December when fashion designer and provocateur Kanye West revealed he’d voted for failed Republican candidate Donald Trump, who lost to President Hillary Rodham Clinton by a humiliating 3 million votes in November.
West explained his support for Trump as stemming from his “loyalty to the underdogs of American politics." The musician's reasoning was met with widespread derision on Twitter and pained, rueful and incredulous reaction on Black Twitter. Writers Heben Nigatu and Tracy Clayton dedicated a special segment of their hit feminist podcast Another Round to imploring Kanye - who once accurately observed that "George Bush doesn't care about black people" - to "return to rationality, for the love of God!"
But things got crazy on Thursday when Swift - a country music darling whose blonde hair and white skin have been praised as "the epitome of female political speech" by Trump supporters and the KKK - announced via Instagram that her upcoming album will be "dedicated to the badass feminists of color who have stared down police at Black Lives Matter protests."
Swift's shocking announcement hit pop music pundits and social media like a bomb, causing Nashville to go into meltdown and the Dixie Chicks to Tweet "About time." New York Times music critic Jon Caramanica convened his long-suffering copy editors, beloved colleague Wesley Morris, and Jezebel's Julianne Escobedo Shepherd for an emergency episode of the NYT Popcast to discuss what Caramanica described as "the suddenly uncertain state of miscegenation in pop music."
Shepherd said the megastars' political positioning reflects "the dystopian undercurrents that have been coursing through a racially fraught America since November’s election. The fact is that Taylor Swift hates Kanye more than she likes her white privilege."
Morris said he looked forward to hearing the album.