Taylor Swift’s “You Need To Calm Down” Inspired A Major Increase In GLAAD Donations
Taylor Swift may be telling the world to "Calm Down" in her latest single, but after hearing this news, it might be hard to do just that. On early Friday, June 14, Swift dropped her new song, "You Need to Calm Down," and Swift's song actually increased GLAAD donations overnight, as reported by TMZ and E! News. The pop star, who also revealed the title (Lover) and release date (August 23 or 8 + 2 + 3 = 13 = Swiftie heads exploding) for her album on Instagram the same day, name-checks the organization in the lyric video for second single off her upcoming record.
In her new song, which like her previous Lover bop "ME!", celebrates self-love and empowerment, Swift sings the lyric, "Why are you mad when you could be GLAAD?" It's a direct address to homophobic people and anthem for the LGBTQ community, indicated by the spelling in the song's lyric video of GLAAD rather than glad. At one point, Swift fires off the zinger, "shade never made anybody less gay." Clearly, Swift's fans aren't throwing shade so much as they're donating money to GLAAD, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. In the hours after Swift's song release, Anthony Ramos, Director of Talent Engagement at GLAAD, said an influx of donations, particularly for the amount of Swift's lucky number 13, had been made to the org. His statement, per E!, read:
"Taylor Swift is one of the world's biggest pop stars. The fact that she continues to use her platform and music to support the LGBTQ community and the Equality Act is a true sign of being an ally. 'You Need to Calm Down' is the perfect Pride anthem, and we're thrilled to see Taylor standing with the LGBTQ community to promote inclusivity, equality, and acceptance this Pride month."
Swift also reportedly made a generous donation to GLAAD, per TMZ. GLAAD even began a fundraiser for Pride Month, in support of LGBTQ advocacy, with a goal of $1,300 in honor of the "Welcome to New York" singer. It's the latest development in a super eventful pride month for Swift. Kicking off June, Swift penned a letter to Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander urging him and her fanbase to support the Equality Act, a bill which would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Swift, who has recently dipped her toe in the political pool during the 2018 midterm elections, has been vocal about her support for LGBTQ rights. In her post, she wrote, "Let's show our pride by demanding that, on a national level, our laws truly treat all of our citizens equally," shedding light on the fact that "some people are completely at the mercy of the hatred and bigotry of others is disgusting and unacceptable" within her letter.
Ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, Swift also made her support for LGBTQ rights known while urging her fans to vote. (If GLAAD's donations spiked, one can only imagine that voter turnout of Swifties saw an increase as well.)
Time will only tell if Swift's forthcoming album (or the "You Need to Calm Down" music video on June 17) will include more social advocacy efforts. If there are more calls to action in the future, Swift's fans will answer them.