The correct way to make a political statement


Co-spread editor Kaitlyn Tom reflects on what she enjoyed about Lady Gaga’s performance yesterday during the Super Bowl halftime show – including her talent as well as her subtle political statements. Screenshot from YouTube.

By Kaitlyn Tom

I’m not a fan of football or any sports for that matter. I don’t know the difference between a softball and a baseball nor do I understand the basic rules of basketball. That being said, this Sunday’s Super Bowl was my favorite game that I’ve ever watched, and I didn’t even view a minute of the actual game.

This Super Bowl brought some members of the original Broadway cast of the Tony winning musical “Hamilton” and Lady Gaga to perform. The result? Two discreetly politically charged performances.

When Meryl Streep got up at the Golden Globes and denounced President Trump, I wasn’t sure how I felt about it. On one hand, I liked that she was using her fame to spread a message. On the other hand, I didn’t feel like the Golden Globes was an appropriate place to publicly and unexpectedly denounce President Trump.

However, the political message that was spread during the performances at the Super Bowl was so artfully woven into the performances that it was easy to miss the political statements.

It started with Renee Elise Goldsberry, Phillipa Soo, and Jasmine Cephas Jones (the cast members from “Hamilton”) emerging wearing pantsuits. Known to be Hillary Clinton supporters, it seemed as if they were channeling Clinton’s iconic look. Additionally, it seemed to be a jab back at Trump’s comment earlier this week where he stated that he wanted his female employees to dress in a feminine way.

Gaga also had her share of political undercurrents in her performance. Many were worried that Gaga was going to make a huge political statement at the Super Bowl, as she’s been known to make many political statements. Gaga didn’t even need to say the name “Trump,” but her message was spread loud and clear. Her choice to sing “This Land is Your Land” harkened back to the Muslim ban, and “Born This Way” encouraged diversity.

After seeing these two performances, I knew that this was the correct way for performers to make political statements without having to make a speech at an event. The way that these artists wove their opinions into their performers, can easily be perceived as harmless, which makes them a hard target for criticism for voicing their political opinions. They spread their opinions through their art, which is essentially what every artist does— just this time, it was political.