You may or may not have seen last night’s beef between noted artists Nicki Minaj and Taylor Swift. After the VMA nominations were announced, Nicki took to Twitter to express her displeasure that her music video for “Anaconda” was not up for the category of Best Choreography. Nicki stated that she believed this is because she doesn’t promote “slim bodies,” and that this snub could also be for racial reasons. Soon after these tweets started firing, Taylor Swift, whose “Bad Blood” video was nominated for Best Choreography, fought back, accusing Nicki of “pitting women against each other.” Taylor basically accused Nicki of discriminating against other women, because apparently female artists should love and support all other female artists, regardless of how they actually feel towards each other’s music.
Whatever. The VMAs are kind of a joke, and no one really gives a shit who wins. I don’t care who thinks they deserve what, and if I’m being honest, I thought both videos were crap. Nicki’s video was nothing but ass, and Taylor tried to disguise her lack of dancing ability by including a shitload of female celebrities in what looked like a terrible action movie. Even if you liked one or both videos, this is just another case of celebrity drama unfolding in a way too public manner, and no one should get too ruffled over two pop artists throwing bitch fits when things didn’t go the way they wanted.
However, in wake of this debacle, I started thinking about a particularly annoying trend that needs to die immediately.
In the last few years, feminism has gained countless supporters, and the notion that a “feminist” can only be portrayed by an angry, bra-burning butch has almost completely gone out the window. This is awesome, and I’m proud of all the strides that both men and women have made towards spreading the message of gender equality.
Amidst this war against sexism, some have forgotten that our main objective is to be equal to men, and not superior to men. I get it. It’s easy to lose sight of the fact that women aren’t all angels when we’re constantly exposed to so much kickass girl power. But we aren’t angels. We’re people, just like men, and we are capable of making mistakes just like they are.
In the quest to support women despite the forces that work against us, some have taken this supportive attitude too far by imploring the idea that we should revere everything women do, just because they are women. Obviously we should support each other, but this doesn’t mean we have to honor every decision a woman makes, even if we think it’s the wrong one, just because she is a girl. If a woman does something stupid, and you then criticize this action, you aren’t betraying feminist ideas. You’re critiquing her the same way you would condemn a man. That’s equality, people.
Nicki Minaj had every right to express her feelings towards what she believed was MTV snubbing her for racially driven reasons. Whether or not the reason she wasn’t nominated for best video was actually about race isn’t the issue here. The issue is that Taylor took this ambivalent complaint and twisted her words, accusing Nicki of “pitting women against each other.”
@NICKIMINAJ I've done nothing but love & support you. It's unlike you to pit women against each other. Maybe one of the men took your slot..
— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) July 21, 2015
What fuck, Taylor? Feminism is not just some tool at your disposal. You can’t whip it out of your back pocket whenever you want to disregard the complaint of another person and instead accuse them of violating a legitimate belief. Throwing around accusations like that doesn’t make you look like the bigger person in the situation. It’s a cheap shot, and you look like a douche.
TSwift is a role model to girls across the globe, and the fact that she attempted to use feminism to make it look like Nicki’s intent was to tear women down is really annoying. Nicki didn’t violate the laws of feminism. She saw something that she thought was wrong and she spoke about it. If she had been salty towards a man and expressed her opinion, no one would pull that card on her. No one would be like, “How dare you tear down men, you fucking bigot.” How is that fair? How is that equality?
People who use feminism as an excuse to persecute women who criticize mistakes of other women by saying they are “tearing women down” are the worst. Feminism is a serious matter dedicated to giving women a voice. It is completely redundant to support its ideals and then basically say, “Women deserve to express their opinions, unless those opinions deem another woman in the wrong.” Nope. Wrong.
Women deserve to express their opinions. Period. If you think a woman is wrong about something, you have every right to say it. You aren’t attacking women. You aren’t “the problem,” and you aren’t fighting against feminism. The notion that we should put every human being with a pair of tits on this pedestal and compliment everything they do isn’t “feminism.” It’s the exact opposite of feminism, and contradicts the idea of gender equality completely. .