Blonde hair, blue eyes, and a bright red lip. With only this simple description, most people nowadays can see themselves picturing the 34 year old singer/songwriter Taylor Swift. While her career started 19 years ago, at the age of 15, and she's seen high levels of popularity in the past, it seems now more than ever that she’s everywhere we go. Whether it be the Eras Tour, film premieres, NFL sightings, or even the Time magazine article naming her the Person of the Year, even people who don’t listen to her music or consider themselves a “Swiftie” seem to know who she is.

While Ms. Swift has become a famous figure for her songs and performances, she’s also become a role model and icon for standing up for what she believes in. In an interview with CBS she talks about the different vocabulary used for women and men stating things such as “when a man does something, it’s strategic; a woman does the same thing, it’s calculated” and “a man is allowed to react; a woman can only overreact.” In her seventh studio album, Lover, she has a song titled “The Man” which comments on the differences in behavior and respect shown towards men and women. Her lyrics reflect on how she wonders how far she would have ascended if she was a man and how she wouldn’t be questioned or blamed for what she was wearing. In the process of making this song we can see her talking to Joel Little in the film Miss Americana. She talks a bit about her experience in the music industry and some of the things she’s been told. “You are kind of doing a constant strategy in your head as to how not to be shamed for something on any given day,” she explains. “But then you get accused of being calculated for having a strategy. So it’s like, it's just a lose-lose situation.”

Ms. Swift has also spoken up about her political stances as well, releasing a song entitled “Only the Young” about the midterm elections in 2018 and encouraging the younger generation to not give up hope about the effects they have on the world around them. 

“Don’t say you’re too tired to fight,” she sings. “It’s just a matter of time.” 

While “Only the Young” may not be as popular to people who haven’t been listening to her music, a much wider known song, “You Need to Calm Down,” also talked about a very important topic involving the LGBTQ community. The song’s music video features Antoni Porowski, Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Tan France, and Jonathan van Ness, who are all openly LGBTQ members of the Netflix series Queer Eye. The accompanying lyrics sing that “Shade never made anybody less gay.”

For a while, Ms. Swift was scared to speak out on anything remotely controversial in fears of being berated or attacked online if her words were misconstrued. In Miss Americana, we can see her talking about the Dixie Chicks, who were very popular until they made one comment about President Bush at one of their concerts. She explains that everyone told her to not be like them if she wanted to make it anywhere. For so long she was told “a nice girl doesn't force

their opinions on people. A nice girl smiles and waves and says thank you. A nice girl doesn't make people feel uncomfortable with her views.” However, she has started speaking up against politicians like former president Donald Trump and Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), showing her disdain for how they think people should be treated. She explains, “it's really basic human rights, and it's right [or] wrong at this point.”

Whether or not you listen to her music, Taylor Swift has most likely been in your life, on your social media, or your magazines at one point or another. And while you may not agree with her extreme amount of fame or understand why some people idolize her, it's clear that she’s made a good impact on the world around her, and there’s still more to come as her popularity continues to increase. 🆅

Photo credits: Kevin Winter/TAS23/Getty Images