In case you haven't heard, Taylor Swift is currently one of the world's favorite feminists. At least, she's one of mine. In fact, pretty much every time Swift opens her mouth about feminism lately, I just want to stand up and applaud. Between shutting down casual sexist jokes on The Graham Norton Show and talking about the feminist chats she has with her lady friends, the pop star's efforts to educate herself about the movement and actively participate in it just warms my soul. But one thing in particular she has pointed out lately really stuck with me. She called out the fact that people slam Swift for writing love songs about her exes when other artists, such as Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars, do it all the time without criticism. And, you know what? She's right.
The thing is, if you compare Swift's songs to Sheeran's songs, there's no difference in terms of content. You can argue about lyrical superiority all day long, if you want to, but the truth is that if you compare a sample lyric from one of Sheeran's songs to a sample lyric from one of Swift's songs, then it quickly becomes clear that it's easy to mistake one for the other. Don't believe me? Here are 13 lyrics from either Swift or Sheeran. Can you tell which artist sang which lyric?
Our last kiss it was perfect. We were nervous on the surface.
Answer: Ed Sheeran. You might have thought that line was pulled from Swift's "Last Kiss" off her 2010 Speak Now album, but it was all Sheeran's "UNI."
She's waiting for the time to move. I knew she had her eyes on you.
Answer: Ed Sheeran. Again, you might have thought this was straight out of Swift's "Better Than Revenge," but flip the gender pronouns back to their original state and this is actually a lyric from Sheeran's "The Man."
When you find everything you looked for, I hope your love leads you back to my front door.
Answer: Taylor Swift. This lyric came from Swift's "Stay Beautiful," off her self-titled 2008 album — though to me it sounds like it could have been pulled from Sheeran's "Give Me Love."
Run your hands through your hair, absent-mindedly making me want you.
Answer: Taylor Swift. Although Sheeran is also prone to talking about hair and running fingers through said hair, this was pulled from Swift's "Fearless" off the album of the same name.
I'll keep you sheltered from the storm that's raging on now.
Answer: Ed Sheeran. Swift might like to sing about perfect storms and raining in her bedroom, but Sheeran's the one that included this lyric in his song "Lego House."
I realize you love yourself more than you could ever love me.
Answer: Taylor Swift. "Picture to Burn" might have been problematic for a certain homophobic line that has since been censored from the song, but this kind of anguish is the kind Sheeran can relate to if songs like "Don't" and "Drunk" are any indication.
It's dark in a cold December, but I've got you to keep me warm.
Answer: Ed Sheeran. Sorry, this isn't "Back to December." It's another line pulled from Sheeran's "Lego House," mainly because wintertime and snuggling imagery sounds like the kind of picture that Swift would want to evoke.
You're perfect for me, why aren't you here tonight?
Answer: Taylor Swift. Finding the perfect man or woman is hard and Swift and Sheeran both sing about that struggle, but this particular line was pulled from Swift's "Hey Stephen."
I'm falling for your eyes, but they don't know me yet.
Answer: Ed Sheeran. If you've listened to 1989 enough, you've probably realized by now that Swift has an obsession with looking into people's eyes. However, this "Kiss Me" lyric was 100 percent Sheeran.
You put up walls and paint them all a shade of gray.
Answer: Taylor Swift. To be honest, I'm not really sure what this "Cold As You" lyric is supposed to mean (didn't The Rolling Stones teach us to paint everything black?), but the song as a whole is about loving a guy who doesn't care or deserve it.
And your eyes turn from green to gray.
Answer: Ed Sheeran. Counting the amount of times that Swift mentions green eyes in her songs for a drinking game would get you drunk in seconds, but this line actually came from Sheeran's "Wake Me Up."
Hearts are never broken and time's forever frozen still.
Answer: Ed Sheeran. This lyric gave me "New Romantics" vibes, but it was actually pulled from Sheeran's "Photograph," which is not about new romantics at all.
My heart's not breaking 'cause I'm not feeling anything at all.
Answer: Taylor Swift. This "The Way I Loved You" lyric makes the song seem more depressing than it is, but it was one of the earliest indications that Swift was going through a bad boy phase. So, how many of these lyrics did you actually get right without looking at the answers? Tell me again how Swift's songs are silly loved songs when compared to Sheeran's and I'll call you a liar.
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