New Taylor Swift Lyrics Say She Wished She Lived in the 1830s, ‘But Without All the Racists’?

On April 19, 2024, 14-time Grammy Award winner Taylor Swift released a double album, “The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology.” In one of the 31 songs, “I Hate It Here,” the second verse allegedly read:

My friends used to play a game where

We would pick a decade

We wished we could live in instead of this

I’d say the 1830s but without all the racists

Backlash ensued on X (formerly Twitter), with users questioning whether the lyrics were real. One post, by X user @ghostijn, garnered more than 6.3 million views and 25,000 likes, as of this writing. “This can’t actually be real ?” One user commented. “IS THIS REAL ??” Another wrote.



“There is no way these are the real lyrics…right?” Another X user posted, quickly gaining more than 6.5 million views, as of this writing.

The lyric is in fact authentic and can be viewed on the official Genius lyrics page [archived here], as well as heard in the song itself on standard music streaming platforms.

Swift’s official YouTube account also posted the song [archived here]; the second verse can be heard at minute 1:15.

A “megathread” also emerged on Reddit entirely devoted to “I Hate It Here,” with many users analyzing the 1830s lyric. While many comments pushed back against the lyrics – “Such an awful and tone deaf lyric. She really becomes more removed from reality every year” – others were confused as to why Swift would romanticize an era of death and disease. “What about the tuberculosis Taylor,” one wrote.

We’ve previously written other stories about Swift, including that she sang background vocals on Beyoncé’s “Cowboy Carter” album, and that she and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein were photographed together.

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