Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the better part of 2023, and now all of 2024, then you know as well as anyone that Taylor Swift is having a *moment* right now. Whether it’s her record-shattering Eras Tour, her 13th and 14th Grammy’s win Sunday evening, or even being named TIME’s Person of the Year for 2023. Perhaps most infamously though is her very public relationship with Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce.
Since the pair started dating late last summer, fans and critics alike have had opinions on Taylor Swift, most notably those bothered by her presence at NFL games in support of her Super Bowl-bound beau.
The 34-year-old’s frequent NFL appearances began in early September, when she confirmed the speculated relationship with Kelce by attending his team’s Week 3 win over the Chicago Bears. After the victory, Swift was seen leaving the stadium with the eight-time Pro Bowler.
Ever since then, the NFL has capitalized on the high-profile romance, turning cameras on the pop star frequently throughout Kansas City Chiefs games, drawing in a whole new era of NFL fans. According to the New York Times, Nielsen Media Research estimated an additional two million women tuned into Kansas City’s game on Oct. 1, dramatically expanding the NFL’s reach and fanbase.
But some “Dads, Brads, and Chads,” as Swift called critics in her TIME Magazine interview, are less than impressed with how often she’s being shown on the screen, even going as far as calling it “distracting.” The New York Times found that Swift has been shown for an average of 24 seconds per broadcast of each 3+ hour game she’s attended.
One dad is defending the pop star this week, calling out those who hate Taylor Swift simply “for existing.”
Robert People, a retired military journalist, author and father from Florida addressed the criticism of Swift in a TikTok video with more than 1.4 million views.
“Those of you people out there, especially grown men, expressing all this nasty, ridiculous hate for Taylor Swift just for existing and supporting her boyfriend in the NFL, keep in mind, Taylor Swift’s not gonna see or hear any of that,” he said in the video. “But you know who will? Your daughters.”
@peoplescourt79 Taylor Swift won’t see it, but your daughters will. Do better. #taylorswift #nfl #traviskelce #girls #men #hate #chiefs #embarrassing #robertpeople #authorrobertpeople #silly #jealousy ♬ original sound – Author Robert People
People continued, “And with all this juvenile hate you’re showing Taylor Swift for simply being there, you’re encouraging your daughters to shrink themselves, reduce who they are. Because if they do anything more than that, if they just decide to be themselves, they’re gonna get a whole lot of hate from not only the world but from people just like you: their own parents. We need to do better, straight up.”
As the father of a 16-year-old daughter, People says he considered how his own daughter perceived the negative responses toward Swift merely showing up to a football game in support of her boyfriend.
“My daughter watches football with me and pays attention to everything I do,” People told TODAY. He says when girls hear complaints over Swift attending a football game they might hear, “Everything that Taylor Swift is, I can’t be.”
People says that slamming Taylor Swift is demoralizing for girls who love sports, causing them to wonder, “Do I really belong here?” in a male-dominated space.
People says that while his video was intended to call out “dads, Brads, and Chads” who are hating on Taylor Swift, the issue goes so much further than just the pop star.
“It’s wrong to treat anyone this way,” he tells TODAY.com. “If you don’t know much about her, then don’t say anything. She’s a human being and people reduce her humanity.”
In fact, People says he wants his daughter to look to “powerful and successful” role models like Swift.
According to The Washington Post, Swift stands to make $4.1 billion in personal earnings from the Eras Tour alone.
Beyond what she’s raking in herself, the sold-out performances along with hotel stays, restaurants and travel stand to generate $5.7 billion in economic impact, larger than the GDP of 50 countries. One California group says the singer’s six shows in Los Angeles brought in $320 million and 3,300 jobs to LA county.