No, Taylor Swift’s new video is not racist

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T-Swizz’s new video to “Shake it Off” dropped today and the Internet is conflicted as to whether or not it’s okay to love the sh*t out of it.

Though the song is catchier than God’s own voice inviting you into heaven and the video is Audrey Hepburn circa “Funny Face” on steroids, the Internet is a little caught off guard by the 1980s-style twerking going on and it’s wondering if we have another Miley circus on our hands.

So, is Tay-Tay appropriating “black culture” for commercialization and being ultra-racist about black stereotypes? Well, not really.

Do we have a cultural appropriation issue in this country? God yes. But Taylor isn’t doing that.


It appears to me that the minds behind this video concept were very careful. The story here is essentially Taylor Swift making fun of how much Taylor Swift sucks at dancing, and it’s wrapped up in a colorful homage to 1980s pop culture.

She’s not actually appropriating anything, she’s just kind of witnessing it and trying to join in with her friends– same as with the rest of the dance troupes. Let us not forget that cultural appropriation is only cultural appropriation if you’re uninvited to take part in the culture, and being of similar descent is not a prerequisite.

In the video you see Taylor blatantly acknowledge that she can’t dance for sh*t and is incredulous at the talent those women display by twerking.

I see you, Taylor.

I see you, Taylor.

She’s giving respect and credit where it’s due, not frivolitizing a legitimate form of dance. She doesn’t do ballet any better…



Frankly, had they not included this important element of 80s pop culture, people of color would have been rightfully outraged at their historical erasure. “Black culture” played an important role in defining a space in American culture that is safe and entitled to people of color. It would have been downright revisionist to eradicate that part of our history and a total dick move on the part of white people, which is probably why they didn’t do it.

Watch the video and tell us what you think:


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