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Taylor Swift’s squad is the group of friends that all 102 million of her Instagram followers most certainly want to be a part of.
They’ve been able to go to award shows with the singer, appear in her music videos, and, of course, attend the coolest parties.
However, according to longtime pal singer/songwriter Lorde, there is a laundry list of things friends can’t do with T-Swift — or any friend who comes with that caliber of fame.
In a recent interview with The Guardian, the “Royals” singer spoke about her upcoming album, her rise to success, and even that one time when David Bowie said listening to her music was like “listening to tomorrow.”
But when asked about her newfound megastar buddies, Lorde offered an analogy to describe their relationship:
“It’s like having a friend with very specific allergies. There are certain places you can’t go together. Certain things you can’t do. There are these different sets of considerations within the friendship.
It’s like having a friend with an autoimmune disease.”
Her analogy didn’t seem to sit well with people — especially those who do suffer from autoimmune diseases:
— Stephanie Marie (@stefinitely85) June 19, 2017
One fan referenced Selena Gomez’s struggle with lupus and the actual hardship that accompanies these diseases:
autoimmune diseases are chronic, they're debilitating, they're painful, they can put you in a coma, and they end lives too soon
— Stephanie Marie (@stefinitely85) June 20, 2017
While another fan was grateful someone decided to call Lorde out on the comment:
I wish I could like this a thousand times. Sorry to mention u again. It's just such an important issue to those who have one!
— Lucy Vigil (@pinkstarlucy) June 20, 2017
Some proposed that Lorde even spend time with those affected:
— Melanie,?✨ #chrillfest host ?? (@bedboundbabe) June 20, 2017
So that she could understand just how much a friendship would be impacted by autoimmune diseases:
You should get to know actually disabled activists…people with autoimmune and other disabilities. Because you don't understand ableism
— Dominick Evans (@dominickevans) June 20, 2017
However, some people felt her analogy was just misunderstood and was never meant to be offensive:
People with autoimmune have things other people just don't want to deal with lots of times. Sad but true
— #BernieWillWin ?? #WeGoHard (@InLWithLBeingL) June 20, 2017
And defended her statements:
But at the end of the day, people felt an apology was in order:
Her comments hurt disabled folks and she owed them an apology
— marwah™ ☭ // lex miller's widow (@prosaicbeing) June 20, 2017
Which the singer didn’t hesitate to issue:
She noted that she never specifically mentioned Taylor Swift — the Guardian did — but she acknowledged her lapse in judgment. Ironically, in the Guardian’s write up, it described Lorde as a colorful conversationalist, writing:
“In conversation, she plunges into new ideas with the enthusiasm of an undergraduate enrolled on her dream course. She searches for the better-expressed phrase or analogy — which isn’t always necessary, because she’s very good off the cuff … She expresses herself for the most part with the fluency of someone at least a decade older.”
According to Autoimmune Registry, nearly 15 million Americans suffered from autoimmune diseases in 2012, It also states that that number has been estimated to reach over 23 million citizens.
Medical News Today reported that those dealing with rheumatoid arthritis alone — roughly 1.3 Americans — have suffered a severe loss in their quality of life. It cited that 37% were still able to work full time, and that the top three effects of the disease were fatigue, pain, and physical limitations. Not to mention that 38% were unable to keep up with medications because of the high cost — something entirely opposite of the problems rich and famous people deal with.
Although Lorde admittedly didn’t mean to offend anyone, it’s clear that fans — both healthy and otherwise — found the thoughtless comparison not only insensitive, but insulting.