Apparently, Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off" is Racist (It's Not)

8/19/2014 2:00 PM PDT, by Sarah Taylor

Poor Taylor Swift -- if it's not one thing, it's another, and her latest single, "Shake It Off" -- a song about shaking off all the negative vibes from her haters, even going into detail about how the public analyzes her romantic life -- is catching flak for her video, saying it's racist and is chock-full of cultural appropriation, but here's the thing, dear God, since we even need to go into this, apparently: it's not.

A lot of the racism talk started with Earl Sweatshirt of Odd Future, who tweeted all this:

haven't watched the taylor swift video and I don't need to watch it to tell you that it's inherently offensive and ultimately harmful

perpetuating black stereotypes to the same demographic of white girls who hide their prejudice by proclaiming their love of the culture

for instance, those of you who are afraid of black people but love that in 2014 it's ok for you to be trill or twerk or say n----

Now really, we shouldn't even be discussing this, because you can't criticize something like this without even watching it. That's just ridiculous and ignorant and annoying. But even if he had watched the video and come to the same conclusion, well, he'd still be wrong. How is a video of Taylor Swift dancing offensive and harmful? The last time we checked, dancing is for everyone. Taylor did ballet, lyrical, hip hop, and then she posed with a bunch of girls who twerked while she she just kind of shook her ass because, bless her, she's wise enough to know that she does not possess that skill. It's a fun video, and really, these days, the world could use a dumb, fun little Taylor Swift video.

So everyone, please: stop trying to find gigantic issues in things where there just aren't any. There are enough things going on that actually are offensive and harmful, and there sure as hell is real racism out there. Let's not waste our energy on fighting against harmless, sweet little Taylor Swift.
Filed Under:  hot photos , Photos , Taylor Swift

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645 days ago

Earl Sweatshirt is mental.

645 days ago

This is the epitome of people being oversensitive. Taylor Swift has constantly been harassed over how she dances, and now she's trying to have fun with it and people are harassing her again. This world has become too much.

Morticia Cowghoul
644 days ago

Lord help me but i actually like that video and song. I've never had anything good to say about her until now. Good for her and me.

Van Lathan
644 days ago

You have almost zero clue what you're talking about. It's evident by reading this. Nice try though.

644 days ago

Don't you know that everything is racist these days. Gen Y is a bunch of weak, worthless, pu$$ies with no spines and super thin skin. Somebody tell this n*gga to grow up and learn what real racism is.

644 days ago

What about when Katy Perry wore that fake braid that was meant to look like ethnic hair and fanned herself with watermelon? I'm surprised that didn't warrant any responses from black celebrities. I didn't see anything wrong with Taylor's video, but then again it's not necessarily my place to deem something as "offensive" or "not offensive" if it doesn't directly affect me.

Also, like Matt said, I couldn't help but notice how ironic your "So everyone, please: stop trying to find gigantic issues in things where there just aren't any" statement. That's literally all this site is about, covering and making a big deal out of otherwise small things - like the Duggar posts or the post where you made a big deal out of Demi Moore giving her daughter a cake with a gun on it.

644 days ago

It's not racist. It is hypocritical: she is devoting 4 minutes to "sing" about how she doesn't let haters bother her while also mocking Miley and Lady Gaga in her video.

644 days ago

WOW..... How did I know that "Sarah" had written this before looking beyond the title? Because she's a racist 13-year old living in a bubble writing about whatever ruffles her uptight feathers. Good God, are you the teen-age daughter of the idiot of who owns this site? Otherwise, how do you have a job? OH btw, your link to your profile goes nowhere... sort of like your future job as a real journalist.

Isaac Newton
644 days ago

There is nothing racist about this video, and Taylor Swift is freaking adorable!!

644 days ago

It is racist. Mainly women of color are twerking, and only white women are ballerinas. Is it that there are no ballerinas of color in the world?

Even if it's inadvertent, it passively propagates stereotypes. You'll notice the white break dancers were decked out in gold lame and the black and latino ones were primarily relegated to the more conventionally "street" look. When she's in her matching "street" gear is the only time she puts on her mean mugs... for the rest of the video, her attitude is closer to "oops, I'm a terrible dancer, sorry, teehee!"

Of course, if you choose not to see racism, nothing will convince you, but you can't say the things I mentioned aren't there. Inadvertent racism still propagates stereotypes.

1 Reply
644 days ago

Can we go one day without faulty outrage by some stupid group or another?

Jeff Winters
643 days ago

"we shouldn't even be discussing this", the only thing that made sense in the whole read.

643 days ago

Haha I've never commented on any of these posts before but I just had to laugh at the presumptuous comments of Sweatrag, Sweatshirt..whoever he is..

I didn't realize people had to ask permission to perform a particular dance move or expand their interests in different musical cultures simply because of the color of their skin.

Sweatrag's comments above were actually incredibly about a hypocrite!!

643 days ago

Everything is racist, your racist fascist racist you! Why? Because racist!

Yeah whatever.

642 days ago

Now if the video wouldve had ALL black girl twerkers.. o yea, I would have been PISSED LOL . Becuase I am a black girl, it would make me think "Damn, what is she saying?? The only black girl dance is shaking your a$$, is that all we know how to do?" But there were white twerkers too, AND a black cheerleader, AND a black ballerina, and most of all white twerkers LOL.. so I think it's okay.I like her. And she is beautiful.Close to prejudice, but not there.

642 days ago

You know what, as a black girl myself, if she would have had ALL black twerkers, yep, it would have offended me, it would make me think "Well geez what is she saying, is that all black girls know how to do is twerk , and we don't know another style of dance ....?" But there were a COUPLE of white twerkers, not even just one... and there was a black cheerleader, AND a black I think gymnast, but most of all there were white twerkers as well LOL, ALMOST racist, but not quite.

626 days ago

The only people that think this is racist are those with nothing else to do with your day. Get a life and shake it off!

You're stupid and most likely whited
541 days ago

We're not saying it's racist because she's dancing you idiot...We're saying she's racist because the twerkers are all black (except one "token" ...notice how there is not TWO or three white women) and the ballerinas and cheerleaders are all white (except ONE TOKEN BLACK CHEERLEADER). She's a racist homophobic stupid woman who acts half her age and gets paid to complain.

1 Reply