If you spend any time on Twitter, you’re probably well aware of the Nicki Minaj vs. Taylor Swift feud that took place over the past 2 days. For anyone who doesn’t know what I’m talking about, you can check this out for a detailed play-by-play.
I found myself sucked into the “drama” between the stars almost immediately after it occurred. I read hundreds of people’s tweets in response to both Nicki and Taylor in hopes of further understanding it more. After doing my unofficial research, I concluded I was Team Nicki. Here’s why.
Taylor Swift is a pop culture icon. She’s beautiful. She’s talented. She’s thin. She’s white. Nicki Minaj is also an icon – especially among female rappers. She’s also beautiful. She’s also talented. But here’s the catch: she’s a curvy, black woman.
Sure, Nicki’s videos (and music in general) are a bit controversial among some, but is Anaconda the first time we’ve seen something like this before? Absolutely not. Wrecking Ball. Blurred Lines. Toxic. The list goes on and on. So who is anyone to judge Nicki? She broke records and made millions in the process – similar to many other female artists. The difference? She wasn’t nominated for Video Of The Year.
Nicki took to Twitter to talk about race issues that still exist in the media today by mentioning the “slim bodies” of different “kinds of artists” and their nominations. So what does Taylor do? She turns it into an issue about herself and how women should support other women, not pit against them.
Don’t get me wrong – feminism is important, but that wasn’t what Nicki was getting at, or even eluding to. I do think Nicki was referring to Taylor’s video, but people who are focusing on that are missing the point. In my opinion, Nicki wanted to make a point about racism in the music industry and society in general – NOT about Taylor specifically.
As a white female artist, Taylor should have known this wasn’t her battle to fight. Disregarding all other factors, her skin color alone puts her in a privileged category above other black females. If you then factor in her look as being the epitome of “white beauty”, it’s clear to see why this issue isn’t about her.
But does Taylor ever have to think twice about any of these issues? No – that’s Nicki’s point. Artists are all doing similar things, yet it seems as if the industry is always shying away from awarding successful black female artists.
While the feud was short lived end ended with an apology, it brought these issues to the surface, which I think is exactly what Nicki wanted in the first place. In the end, it’s a race issue – not a Taylor Swift issue. While we like to think that since it’s 2015, racism is a thing of the past, but it’s not. The double standard between white and black female artists is still very prominent in the media today. Nicki starting a conversation about it is a great first step to help end it, but now it’s up to us.