Role Models?

Image Credit to Glambamm

She’s one of those young music starlets that you want to look up to. Her personal life is clean, her image is clean, her music is peppy and full of verve, but clean. She sings about real issues, but she keeps the message positive and upbeat. Taylor Swift has proven to truly be a good role model for young girls.

At least, until her latest album. I was driving home and this song came on; honestly I wouldn’t have placed it on hers, but I was horrified. She was singing about crashing an ex’s wedding and begging him to run away with her – because of course she was so much better then his bride. And of course he runs away with her. The song, Speak Now, is the title track to her latest album.

I am not the kind of girl,
Who should be rudely bargin’ in on a white veil
occasion,
But you are not the kind of boy,
Who should be marryin’ the wrong girl,

I sneak in and see your friends,
And her snotty little family, all dressed in pastel,
And she is yelling at a bridesmaid,
Somewhere back inside a room,
Wearing a gown shaped like a pastry,
This is surely not what you thought it would be,
I lose myself in a daydream,
Where I stand and say:

“Don’t say yes, run away now,
I’ll meet you when you’re out,
Of the church at the back door,
Don’t wait or say a single vow,
You need to hear me out,”
And they said, “Speak now,”

Fun gestures are exchanged,
And the organ starts to play
A song that sounds like a death march,
And I am hiding in the curtains,
It seems I was uninvited by your lovely bride-to-be,
She floats down the isle like a pageant queen,
But I know you wish it was me,
You wish it was me, don’t you?

Don’t say yes, run away now,
I’ll meet you when you’re out,
Of the church at the back door,
Don’t wait or say a single vow,
You need to hear me out,
And they said, “Speak now,”

Don’t say yes, run away now,
I’ll meet you when you’re out,
Of the church at the back door,
Don’t wait or say a single vow,
Your time is running out,
And they said, “Speak now,”

I hear the preacher say,
“Speak now or forever hold your peace,”
There’s a silence, there’s my last chance,
I stand up with shaking hands,
All eyes on me,
Horrified looks from everyone in the room,
But I’m only lookin’ at you,

I am not the kind of girl,
Who should be rudely bargin’ in on a white veil
occasion,
But you are not the kind of boy,
Who should be marryin’ the wrong girl,

So don’t say yes, run away now,
I’ll meet you when you’re out,
Of the church at the back door,
Don’t wait or say a single vow,
You need to hear me out,
And they said, “Speak now,”

And you say,
“Let’s run away now,
I’ll meet you when I’m out of my tux at the back door,
Baby, I didn’t say my vows,
So glad you were around when they said, “Speak now,”

So here she is, wedding crashing. This is a bit more severe version of You Belong With Me, another popular hit of Ms. Swifts in which the best friend knows she’d be better for the guy than his current girlfriend. Because, you know, the girlfriend has her own taste in music and wears short skirts and high heels. We all know that makes a bad girlfriend. That song I could kind of forgive though, because, it’s just a twist on the old best gal pal crush.

But Speak Now? It offends me down to the core of who I am. Whether she was this guy’s ex or just a friend, the audacity to say that he really wants it to be her and not his bride-to-be. Maybe it’s because I know that B has an ex who would probably have jumped at the chance to “Speak Now” at our wedding. Maybe it’s because I feel like girl’s should be encouraged to go after emotionally available guys. All I know is though, that I question the role model capabilities of someone who would sing a song like this.

You may be thinking, now K, seriously, it’s just a song. But is it? Ms. Swift talks about writing her songs out of personal experiences and feelings. Would she really go to someone’s wedding, sneaking in nonetheless, and try and persuade the groom to run off with her? Does she really want young girls day-dreaming about doing this? What happened to waiting for your own Love Story?

I could have been that bride. Okay, I wouldn’t have been yelling at a bridesmaid, but, B had some female friends (namely the ex) that I wouldn’t have wanted invited to the wedding. I didn’t, and still don’t, feel like she respects my relationship with him. I feel that she still thinks her relationship with him trumps mine. Just like the girl in Speak Now. Just like the girl in You Belong With Me. It’s a trend that says, you may be happy with this girl, but I’d be better for you. It says, we have history, I’m a better person, I know you better, I like everything you like, I can make you happier. And that’s all perspective. I’m sure that B’s ex could have said the same things about me. If her perspective is that she’s better for B than I am, does that give her the right to break up our marriage? To try and stop our wedding?

Of course not. And no one would say that she should. But they’ll still sing along to Speak Now and not think anything of it. Maybe I would have too, before I’d become the “other girl” in a Taylor Swift song. Now though, I question her status as a role model. I don’t want little girls thinking that the best they can do is go after another woman’s man. I want them to know that they are strong enough, pretty enough, smart enough to find their own Prince Charming. Without destroying another girl’s fairy tale in the process.

~The Countess~

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About texancountess

I find myself in the calming roar of the sea, floating gently on the foam of the breaking waves. Blue. Green. Gray. The colors of the sea mark the boundaries of my soul. The tumbled glass finds its polish under the relentless pounding of the waves upon the shore. Thus am I. Rough transitioning to polish, refinement ever a process, finding my niche in the storms of life.
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3 Responses to Role Models?

  1. MJ says:

    OMG! I haven’t heard this song. I was a Taylor fan at the beginning, a lot of her songs are cute and catchy, but then they get so overplayed! She definitely appeals to young girls in a way that’s been absent since we had our Spice Girls girl power to aspire to, but she really comes off as thinking she’s God’s gift to everything, including all the men she wants, regardless of their status!

    I like how the lyrics at least attempt to make the bride the bad person because she yells at her bridesmaid and has horrible taste in wedding gowns! Young women should definitely have someone to look up to who advocates healthy relationships (Taylor’s bouncing around between men and then writing songs about them is kind of steering her into Britney territory, uh oh).

    • Haha, I love the “God’s gift to everything” comment. So true. And Britney territory – dangerous but funny. Why couldn’t she just be like Carrie Underwood? ;)

      Yeah, she definitely tries to make the bride a bad person because of her pastel color palette, pastry wedding gown, and bridezilla ways…but, I mean, do those things really make us bad for a guy? Because girls on their wedding days are rarely their best selves…

  2. Shiny says:

    Wow – so sad. The world’s view of love and romanticism is so messed up. She probably thought she was singing a romantic star-crossed lovers tale, but what a tragedy. Come on Taylor, f you are with a guy who cheated on his former lover with you, what makes you think he won’t cheat on you?
    P.S. I’m so glad you married such an awesome guy and not some wishy-washy punk-a$$ cheater. You just have better taste in men, K. :-D
    Love you, Miss you.
    <3,
    M

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