Taylor Swift Donates $113,000 to Support LGBTQ Advocacy Group in Tennessee

The singer donated the sum to the Tennessee Equality Project — and included a handwritten note

iHeartRadio Music Awards, Arrivals, Microsoft Theater, Los Angeles, USA - 14 Mar 2019
Photo: Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock

Taylor Swift is taking a political stance once again, this time with a $113,000 donation meant to aid in efforts to stop anti-LGBTQ legislature in Tennessee.

The “Delicate” singer, 29, donated the hefty sum to the Tennessee Equality Project Monday, executive director Chris Sanders said.

Sanders praised the singer as a “long-time ally to the LGBTQ community” in a message shared to Facebook.

“She sees our struggle in Tennessee and continues to add her voice with so many good people, including religious leaders, who are speaking out for love in the face of fear,” he wrote. “Tennessee Equality Project is honored and grateful to reveal Taylor Swift has made a donation of $113,000 to support our efforts at this critical moment.”

He also included a photo of a handwritten letter from Swift explaining the reasons behind her donation.

“I’m writing you to say that I’m so inspired by the work you do, specifically in organizing the recent petition of Tennessee faith leaders standing up against the ‘Slate of Hate’ in our state legislature,” the singer wrote. “Please convey my heartfelt thanks to them and accept this donation to support the work you and those leaders are doing. I’m so grateful that they’re giving all people a place to worship.”

Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty

The so-called “slate of hate” in the Grammy winner’s adopted state of Tennessee is comprised of 12 separate bills that, if passed, would limit the rights of LGBTQ citizens, according to NBC News. Among them is the Tennessee Natural Marriage Act, which would ban gay marriage, and a bill that would protect adoption agencies who turn away gay parents.

The Tennessee Equality Project, an organization that works in legislative advocacy, recently helped get more than 100 religious leaders in the state to support a petition against the bills, which they said in a statement “promote discrimination rather than justice,” according to NBC.

The $113,000 amount also holds significance for Swift, as 13 has long been her lucky number.

The pop star only recently broke her silence on her political leanings after remaining controversially tight-lipped during the 2016 election.

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Swift endorsed two Democratic candidates running in Tennessee midterm elections in October, explaining that for the first time, she felt compelled to make her political leanings clear.

“I’m writing this post about the upcoming midterm elections on November 6th, in which I’ll be voting in the state of Tennessee,” Swift began her lengthy message alongside a subdued Polaroid of herself. “In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now.”

She went on to endorse Phil Bredesen for Senate and Jim Cooper for House of Representatives, leading to a spike in voter registration.

“We are up to 65,000 registrations in a single 24-hour period since T. Swift’s post,” Kamari Guthrie, Vote.org’s director of communications, told BuzzFeed News.

Swift wrote in Elle in March that she was still “finding [her] voice in terms of politics,” and would continue educating herself.

“Invoking racism and provoking fear through thinly veiled messaging is not what I want from our leaders, and I realized that actually is my responsibility to use my influence against that disgusting rhetoric,” she wrote. “I’m going to do more to help. We have a big race coming up next year.”

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