As one of the world’s biggest pop stars, fans and pop culture vultures are always wondering what Taylor Swift is up to. And in recent years, many have been questioning the singer songwriter’s sexuality.
Swift is known to leave easter eggs detailing her love life throughout her song lyrics, and it appears that some fans put a queer twist on some of her songs, suspecting that she has a romantic relationship with model friend Karlie Kloss.
The New York Times published an opinion piece last week in which the writer specified that there were various “easy-to-decode clues” within Swift’s discography and personal life that suggest she might be queer.
Songs titles for singles like “Lavender Haze” and aesthetic choices (pastel blues and pinks) for albums like “Lover” could be perceived as a nod to bisexuality, that is, if you’re looking for clues.
Other artists who allude to being queer in their art are often accused of “queerbaiting,” a term used to describe the practice of being aloof or mysterious about one’s sexual identity to attract attention from the LGBTQ+ community.
Swift addressed one of her LGBTQ+ friendly song “You Need to Calm Down” (an anthem that essentially tells homophobic people to shove it) in an interview with Vogue back in 2019 saying she only recently realized she could “advocate for a community that [she’s] not a part of.”
She has also openly reflected upon her choice to stop dating in the public eye after she was slut shamed for dating too many men and writing songs about them. However, she found that even if she stopped dating in the public eye, the public would then speculate she might be hiding her true sexuality.
“If I only hung out with my female friends, people couldn’t sensationalize or sexualize that – right?” she wrote. “I would learn later on that people could and people would.”
An anonymous representative for Swift told CNN “This article wouldn’t have been allowed to be written about Shawn Mendes or any male artist whose sexuality has been questioned by fans.”
“There seems to be no boundary some journalists won’t cross when writing about Taylor, regardless of how invasive, untrue, and inappropriate it is – all under the protective veil of an ‘opinion piece’,” the spokesperson said.
So why is it so problematic to open public discourse about a celebrity’s sexuality? Well, put simply, outing people is never a good thing. Pink News reports that several celebrities including Dove Cameron, Rita Ora, Jameela Jamil and Kit Connor came out because people suspected they were queerbaiting. To force someone to come out before they’re ready takes away the power of the person to decide when they are comfortable with others being aware of their sexual identity.
If Taylor Swift openly dates straight men and says plainly that she’s not gay, then maybe we should take her word for it.