‘Speak Now’: Taylor Swift lends platform to movements in US, Philippines, Hong Kong
MANILA, Philippines – There was once a time when Taylor Swift, arguably one of the biggest music stars of her generation, would be criticized for staying eerily silent even in the most crucial moments in American politics. She's since regretted her silence – especially after Donald Trump won in the 2016 elections.
In 2020, the Grammy award-winning singer is anything but quiet.
Early Wednesday, June 3, Taylor Swift posted on her Instagram, where she boasts of over 113 million followers, a story urging followers to educate themselves on the most pressing issues because “this doesn’t go away once the topic isn’t ‘trending.’”
The post, a screenshot of a carrd page, links primarily to resources and pages on the Black Lives Matter movement in the United States. In her home country, protests have erupted in every state over the killing of George Floyd in the hands of Minneapolis police. His death, and the death of so many Black Americans before him, renewed indignation over prejudice and injustice towards black people in America. The carrd has been used by thousands of people, including celebrities and publications, to rally support for the movement.
She earlier criticized Trump’s threat against protesters in the US.
After stoking the fires of white supremacy and racism your entire presidency, you have the nerve to feign moral superiority before threatening violence? ‘When the looting starts the shooting starts’??? We will vote you out in November. @realdonaldtrump— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) May 29, 2020
But it seems Taylor has taken her 2016 regrets to heart and is now using her platform for causes beyond the US and onto Asia. The carrd page also includes links to another carrd page for resources on the Junk Terror Bill movement in the Philippines and Stand With Hong Kong.
Taylor’s IG story made headlines in the Philippines, even as the House of Representatives passed the controversial anti-terrorism bill on 3rd reading on Wednesday. Since the bill, which passed the Senate in February, has been certified urgent by President Rodrigo Duterte, it’s all the more closer to becoming a law.
The proposed law has been criticized for the danger it poses against dissent in the Philippines.
In Hong Kong, tensions have risen over China’s encroaching hold over the city. In 2019, proposed amendments to Hong Kong’s extradition law paralyzed parts of the city. In May 2020, even as the whole world was still reeling from the coronavirus pandemic, “China proposed a new national security law for Hong Kong,” according to the petition.
“The citizens of Hong Kong have been and still are protesting against this increasing threat to Hong Kong autonomy,” it added.
As of posting, Taylor has not posted anything else about any of the movements. But if a tension-filled scene from 2020’s Miss Americana, wherein people around her – including her own father – try to stop her from making a stand against a senator from Tennessee, her Instagram story shouldn’t be the last of a political Taylor Swift.
"I need to be on the right side of history,” the singer said in the documentary, regretting her decision to stay quiet during the 2016 US elections. – Rappler.com