Taylor Swift’s Victim Card is Toxic


On August 25, Taylor Swift released her latest single, “Look What You Made Me Do,” taking the internet by storm and possibly setting the record for “World’s Largest Publicly-Thrown Temper Tantrum.”

The single is the first to be released from her sixth studio album, Reputation, which is exactly what it sounds like: Taylor is trying to clear her name and re-brand as a more focused, more empowered woman. Still, Swift’s notoriety as being an extremely petty human being knows no bounds, as she tears into yet another person while attempting to clear her own name.

The track is a classic case of an artist trying too hard to be something they’re not and exponentially failing in the process. An uncharacteristic (arguably copied) bounce beat thuds half-heartedly beneath her sing-ranting to create a song that is a less than pleasurable listening experience – to put it nicely.

There’s a greater problem beyond the song’s mediocrity (at best): a toxic mentality that Swift has developed as she goes through cycles of playing the victim.

Absent of her recent groping trial, I have never really had pity for Swift. Consider this: ever since Swift has made it to the mainstream, she has overplayed every possible opportunity to be the victim.

Many pin the true start of this roleplay to her VMA run-in with Kanye West from 2009 which, at this point, everyone is tired of hearing about. It is no surprise that “Look What You Made Me Do” dredges up the West issue with petty remarks including “Don’t like your tilted stage/The role you made me play.”

Tom Hiddleston sports an “I Heart T.S.” shirt while on the beach with Swift.

Regardless of when it truly began, Taylor Swift has always exploited the men in her life, whether it be trashing Joe Jonas on Ellen (circa 2008), making blatant references to Harry Styles on 1989 (See: “Style,” paper airplanes, etc.), or parading Tom Hiddleston around in public with a hideous “I [love] T.S.” shirt for publicity.

Swift also doesn’t play nicely with other females (See: Katy Perry). Even in songs like “Better Than Revenge,” Swift blames another girl for stealing her man, which seems like misdirected anger— shouldn’t she be angry at the guy for playing with her emotions?

“Look What You Made Me Do” is (probably) her first full-blown freak out. Sure, all celebrities are put under insane pressure and often crack — this is understandable, but what Swift does/continues to do is different and far more calculated: she obsesses over those who do her wrong, but always insists that she could never possibly be at fault.

Swift’s inability to handle the stressors and disappointment that, though in her case may be magnified, everyone else faces, is pathetic. Everyone has had their heart broken and their reputation questioned; everyone has felt like the “other” significant other, been belittled; What defines a person throughout all of these is how they choose to act in response. Swift chooses to be angry every time. No one “made [her] do” anything, and if it’s all fake, she’s doing a great job playing her role.

Holding this toxic mentality that everyone else is evil is juvenile. It teaches our youth to be dramatic and unwilling to own faults and truly grow from their experiences; that it’s acceptable to tear others down in pursuit of revenge instead of being the bigger person and quietly moving on; and that attacking other people will ultimately end in a rise in popularity. I used to be a fan of Swift and her catchy heartbreak bops, but she has pushed too far throughout the years. I hope that the release of her new single is just a tragic misrepresentation of her new sound and that she will learn her place in the world of pop music.