On a day when you reported that the Treasury had chosen to underfund the NHS in a fit of pique, it seemed odd, to say the least, that you used your editorial pages (25 November) to alert us to the global threat posed by Taylor Swift.
In the article, you portrayed Swift as embodying the values of Trump because she: has written songs about her life; is adept in the use of social media; has the temerity not to give her music away for free on Spotify; wishes her biggest fans to get tickets to her concerts; has a friendship group from a similar social and ethnic background; and fails to explicitly condemn President Trump and all his works.
It feels wrong for a liberal newspaper to tell a young female artist how she ought to think, speak and behave. I am one of the subscribers that Katharine Viner seeks, but is this really the “independent journalism the world needs”?
• What an extraordinary leader attacking Taylor Swift. And to conflate her with Trump is ridiculous. Yes, she makes records aimed at those she sees as her audience; perhaps she wants to sell some! And for a ticket to her greatly oversubscribed concerts, it’s loyal fans first, like FA Cup tickets.
But let’s get to the real charge, that she is surrounded by people who are “largely thin, white and wealthy”. Even if true, so what? Is this really a Guardian leader? You would do better service condemning genuine discrimination, such as male-only clubs, female-only literary prizes, black-only music prizes, and male-only religious buildings, for starters.
Wighill, North Yorkshire
• I am a 67-year-old male, so I’m not one of Taylor’s usual fans. I am also not a perv who leers at young women. I just appreciate her music and admire her courage. I’ve played guitar and sung before sizable audiences for over 40 years nearly every weekend. I have been a progressive all my life. I am definitely not a Trump fan.
I am completely befuddled by your editorial slamming of Taylor Swift. How can you possibly compare her to Donald Trump? She has actually contributed substantial amounts of her earnings in support of marvellous educational and public welfare charities, unlike Trump. I don’t normally listen to country music but even Bob Dylan did a foray into that genre. She broke into a highly competitive business in her mid-teens not only singing with a beautiful voice but with her own compositions. She also pulled off a transition from country to pop that few have. She has been highly productive and shown amazing strength embarking on rigorous worldwide concert tours performing as hard as possible to entertain her audiences. She is the only pop singer I can stand because her songs are consistently real and powerful and not loaded with sexual innuendo, obscene costumes, and meaningless, soulless pablum.
Speaking of Dylan, he hasn’t ranted on about Trump either. Why should anyone give a hoot what he or Taylor or the stars of stage and screen think about Trump? She has neither trashed nor touted him. Neither has she expressed thoughts similar to his. If you threw out all the music and literature dealing with wounded love there wouldn’t be a lot left.
• Your leader on Taylor Swift prompted me to wonder whether those in charge of the paper in the 1960s would ever have thought it worthwhile to devote a leader to the failure of Elvis Presley to condemn the Vietnam war.
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