Taylor Swift officially has an honorary doctorate from New York University. On Wednesday, the singer took the stage at Yankee Stadium to the sound of thousands of people’s applause to accept the Doctor of Fine Arts, honoris causa degree, and made a 20-minute speech. In the clever and heartwarming speech, the 32-year-old opened up about her life and talked about the public obsession with her love life.
Swift has been dating “Conversations with Friends” star Joe Alwyn since 2016, but their relationship has been fairly private compared to her past flames with stars like John Mayer and Jake Gyllenhaal, and she likes it that way. Once the singer began dating as a teenager, her relationships were a tabloid sensation, with fans ready to fight for her whenever there was a split. “Having the world treat my love life like a spectator sport in which I lose every single game was not a great way to date in my teens and twenties, but it taught me to protect my private life fiercely,” she told the crowd.
The “Bad Blood,” singer has made headlines over the years with “embarrassing” moments, like a “Granny-Panties incident,” but perhaps the most unforgettable is when Kanye West got on stage to interrupt her speech in 2009 at the MTV VMA Awards when she won the award for Best Female Video of the Year.
Swift talked about her public humiliation explaining, “Being publicly humiliated over and over again at a young age was excruciatingly painful but it forced me to devalue the ridiculous notion of minute by minute, ever-fluctuating social relevance and likability.”
There were also moments throughout her career when Swift upset the public, like her lyrics to “Picture to Burn” where she talked about people gossiping behind her back. “That’s fine, I’ll tell mine that you’re gay,” she sang. The lyrics were changed shortly after the LGBTQ+ community came for her. There was also the time she posed with a guy wearing a Swastika. “Getting canceled on the internet and nearly losing my career gave me an excellent knowledge of all the types of wine,” she quipped in the speech.
All in all, it’s only made her stronger, and at the end of the day, mistakes are human nature, and she admits she will make them again. “We are led by our gut instincts, our intuition, our desires and fears, our scars and our dreams. And you will screw it up sometimes. So will I. And when I do, you will most likely read about it on the internet,” she said at the end of her speech.