Beyonce, Barbie & Swift

Lots of young women in the news these days and I’m delighted to see so much estrogen greasing the wheels of progress. Over the past few months we’ve had Beyonce, Barbie and Taylor Swift flushing billions of dollars through the global economy. CNN has filled Don Lemon’s former nightly news slot with Kaitlan Collins and Chris Cuomo’s former slot with Abby Phillip, two brilliant young women, poised and sassy, doing kick ass interviews and dissecting current events with sincerity and respect. Then there’s Cassidy Hutchinson, a one woman crusade to save integrity from extinction. All those eyelashes are sure to have a Butterfly Effect. 

Billie Best writes about younger women.

Could this flash mob of women coordinating outfits, celebrating pink, making friendship bracelets, and expressing their differences without anger, be the antidote to toxic masculinity?  I hope so. Beyonce fans crowd-sourced funding so a man in a wheelchair could attend her concert. Kaitlan Collins is resurrecting the evenhandedness of Walter Cronkite. Taylor Swift is opening new markets for the NFL just by attending a few football games. And Cassidy Hutchinson talks about being a moderate as though it’s cool to believe in government institutions again.

Maybe the worm has turned. I get that being mean can be funny and exciting, and even refreshing. It’s easy to see that sometimes being polite can feel false, and mean can feel real. But when being mean is the path to power, we’re in trouble. It’s exhausting to have so much hostility excreted into our information diet. So, I’m hoping that the mean spirit that has swamped the public sphere for so long can be diluted by the estrogen flowing through pop culture right now. 

All my life I’ve been an NFL football fan, grew up in a Green Bay Packers family in the Midwest, became a New England Patriots fan when I lived in Boston, and now I’m living with a Chicago Bears fan. It’s football season at our house. So I’m watching to see what happens to Sunday Night Football when two million Swifties tune in because they want to know what Taylor’s fuss is all about. This is a cultural moment. Pay attention. How will the very gendered fan bases of Swift and the NFL mix? Already the media is following the money, swapping out the usual heavy metal guitar breaks for a quick riff from a Taylor Swift song. Announcers who made misogynistic comments about Taylor and her fans had to walk it back because Swifties brought their piggy banks to the game, they increased merch sales by 400%, they went to sports bars, they tuned in to live television, they bought tickets, and they will follow Taylor wherever she goes. If this keeps up, you can expect the NFL to roll out a pink carpet for their new audience. 

Girl power is on the march. The Bey Hive, Swifties and Barbies represent women supporting women, and in their world, meanness is not cool. Now Barbie has hit the ranks of 25 highest-grossing films ever. Soon Beyonce and Swift will release their own concert tour films. Cassidy Hutchinson is on a book tour preaching public service. And it seems Taylor may bridge the chasm between machismo and feminism by publicly consorting with a hunky NFL player. Can you feel the vibe shift? The fresh scent estrogen is in the air. Now all we need is a tampon commercial during the Super Bowl. 

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4 thoughts on “Beyonce, Barbie & Swift

  1. I’d add a parade of gay queer fairy boys t this parade – their ‘we don’t have kids’ extra dough and left leaning homos (Logcabin fruits notwithstanding – ho win Hell can they support the elephants crowding that tent?!) floods the market as well. sort of.

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