taylor swift you need to calm down
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Taylor Swift just dropped her music video for "You Need to Calm Down," and it's dripping in gay culture. 

Love her or hate her, the artist has been a mainstay of the pop music sphere for nearly a decade. Her previous work revealed intimate details about her personal life, her feuds and friendships, and her romantic relationships, of course. However, in the past she has kept her political views to herself, but with the release of her seventh albumLovers, that quiet mentality is over.

Swift's loud and proud message about gay rights is honorable if it's genuine, but some people are questioning whether or not it's performative. It doesn't help the 29-year-old's case that she has a history of playing the victim and taking attention away from the people she's trying to help.

Her latest music video for the new single from her Lovers album features countless gay icons and celebrities. 

From the Fab Five to Ellen DeGeneres to Billy Porter to Laverne Cox, the video was spilling over with gay icons. Not to mention the rainbow-glitter-filled trailer park that Swift created was highly symbolic of Pride Month and LGBTQ rights. 

The artist's song gives a nod to LGBTQ activist organization GLAAD and calls out bullies who shade people on the internet for being themselves. While the message is supportive of the queer community, some felt that Swift centered Pride Month and the gay rights movement around herself. 

People are calling her out for capitalizing off Pride Month and LGBTQ people.

It's great that Swift featured authentic LGBTQ representation in her music video and is highlighting their work after the drop of the music video. She seems to be actively making an effort to be a true ally as opposed to doing it just for show. But some people are still questioning, "Why now?"

One critic shared a Taylor Swift fan account's post that pointed out the positive elements in her video and wrote a reply. "Taylor Swift has never been all loud for the LGBTQIA+ community before, and now suddenly she’s doing all this? Another celebrity jumping on the Queer bandwagon and trying to capitalize off it." 

She certainly hasn't always been an ally and had a problematic lyric in her 2008 single "Picture to Burn." 

Another reason some fans are calling out her motives is because of her past homophobic lyrics. "Taylor Swift is just afraid someone will remember she used 'gay' as a slur in the original 'picture to burn' 2008 single," one critic remembered in a tweet. 

Swift told MTV in a 2011 interview, "I think retrospect will tell a lot. Years from now I'll look back and go, 'I didn't know anything then.'... Now the way that I would say that and the way that I would feel that kind of pain is a lot different." 

Her lyrics in the song she wrote as a heartbroken teen are, "So go and tell your friends that I'm obsessive and crazy / That's fine! I'll tell mine you're gay."

Swift has since removed the line from any streaming platforms and in the original music video on her YouTube channel. She no longer sings the lyric in live performances, either.

Swift made a surprise appearance at the historic Stonewall Inn during the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. 

Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson emceed the event in New York City and surprised guests with Swift's appearance. 

"I’m so happy I don’t have to keep this secret any longer. Look who came to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall at the Stonewall Inn. @taylorswift13, you are a gem. Thank you for everything you do for the LGBTQ community. We <3 you!" Ferguson shared in a tweet. 

Ahead of her album's release and the drop of her new single, it seemed like a convenient moment for publicity. But she didn't perform her new song, as the appearance wasn't to promote her new music. Instead, she opted for Ferguson's favorite, "Shake It Off."

Some people are also calling out Swift for potentially queerbaiting, something she's been accused of in the past. 

Swift fans have been acknowledging her questionable sexuality for years and wondering if she would ever fully come out. The artist has used rainbow symbolism and the gay rights movement as tools in her Easter egg-filled music videos in the past, which has prompted fans to speculate whether or not she is more than an ally and an actual member of the queer community. 

One critic didn't think that was the case, and that she is using these symbols for a profit. "I'll delete this tweet if she really fully comes out but tbh I'm like 80% sure Taylor Swift is queerbaiting you all in the name of ticket and record sales and it's really bumming me out," wrote writer and comedian Megan MacKay in a tweet. 

Swift cleared the air over rumors that she was using the new music video as a way to queerbait her fans. 

Queerbaiting is a marketing technique in which a celebrity, politician, or another person of status uses LGBTQ symbols or people to pose as a queer person in order to make a profit. Katy Perry, who made an appearance in Swift's video ending the age-old beef the two had for each other, was once accused of queerbaiting in her song "I Kissed A Girl." 

Rumors started circling that Swift and Perry would kiss in the new music video for "You Need to Calm Down," but Swift took to her favorite social media platform to shut that down. 

"Guys. That is ABSOLUTELY false. To be an ally is to understand the difference between advocating and baiting. Anyone trying to twist this positivity into something it isn’t needs to calm down. It costs zero dollars to not step on our gowns," she wrote. 

One Swift fan thought that it was hypocritical for her other LGBTQ fans to call her out for supporting their rights. 

A self-proclaimed Swiftie tweeted, "Gays: Taylor Swift needs to use her platform.

Taylor: Speaks out on LGBTQ rights, donates $113k+ to pro-LGBT advocacy groups, raises 200K signatures for the Equality Act, releases a pro LGBTQ song, centers diverse queer voices in a music video, etc etc etc.

Gays: Stop that." 

This fan was disappointed that people didn't see the active efforts Swift has taken to support gay rights and not just for show in a music video. 

The reaction to the latest Taylor Swift controversy is split, and some are downright confused. But her fans are strong and will continue to support her. 

Musician and Swift supporter Eli Lieb tweeted, "To the people who are saying @taylorswift13 is using the gay community to make money... YOU NEED TO CALM DOWN. She is the biggest pop star on the planet and is vocally taking a stand against so much hate in the world. She has more influence than almost anyone. Let her support us." 

Swift is giving the queer community visibility and support and made a pop song filled to the brim with gay symbolism. But it's important to remember how much she is profiting off this movement. It feels a little contrived that Swift would choose 2019 as the year to finally open her eyes to the queer community. There's a way to support LGBTQ people and be an ally, and some are saying that this isn't it