empowered. When I saw the word written proudly under celebrity Instagrams, I
didn’t experience a zip of glee. And as the hashtag grew to covering friends
social media accounts, I felt uncomfortable, not satisfied.
You see, I don’t like #squads.
her squad of Victoria Secret models on that
video, following a year in counting adorning Instagrammed photos, #squad and
#squadgoals has skyrocketed.
Squads are the newest way of being cliquey without anyone calling you out and saying “hey, you’re being cliquey”.
empowerment I was expecting, all I could see was girl hate. Aesthetically
beautiful Victoria Secret models helped
down her Arch Nemesis to the delight of the media. She was applauded for taking
down another girl and walking with her #squad through the desert as explosions
go off and they all look oh-so-hot-and-glamorous. Selena Gomez wasn’t Cady Heron and everything
was solved to a peaceful end – she was Janice and there was no forgiveness on
either side. Taylor Swift stayed Queen Bee.
core that screams EXCLUSIVITY. It’s a hair flick away from the High School
Queens; think Quinn from Glee in her
Cheerios outfit publicly shamming Rachel Berry.
empowerment, just lots of secret smiles and glances to you making you feel left
out. There’s no girl to girl love. By having Taylor Swift in a boob tube and
short skirt while Selena (or Arsyn as her character is called. You know, like
poison?) is in a ruffled, high necked PVC blouse and skater skirt. It makes us
automatically see Catastrophe as the sexy
girl and Ayrsn as the less cool
friend, so when Ayrsn betrays her, we start thinking “hey, maybe she’s jealous
girl competition between two friends, because when isn’t there?
out of games in Primary School or not being invited to sleepovers at 14. It’s
the backhanded compliment, a giggle with a subtle middle finger no one notices.
It’s a feeling of not being good enough, not worthy enough, to be in this
Godlike elite group. You would be #blessed to be in this #squad, because after
all they’re #squadgoals. But you aren’t and that’s what makes it sweeter for
the squad and bitter for you, because you’re sitting on the other side of the
movement is hard. It feels like a kickback to every other girl, like if I
publicly say ‘no I don’t like squads’ I’m somehow a girl hater. I’m pushing
back ‘girl power’ when I don’t see or feel the empowerment. I watched Bad Blood
and I was very aware how unskinny and very brunette I was. Instead of gleeful
excitement and empowerment, there was only a feeling of excessiveness and a
hollow feeling of being well, left out. Bad Blood brought squads into our
mainstream language and then dictated how exactly a squad should be. Look at
any of the gossip stories so many magazines now publish (Vogue, I’m looking at
you) and you see how todays celebs and Insta-models have their #squads spoken
about like they’re the cool kids in school. What happened to celebrating women
in general? Why do I have to be leggy and blonde to be praised for being
badass? Since when did what a girl look like make her more badass than the
woman sitting in an office designing the next thing for NASA or the medical
be valued highly, and publically?
squads, because there’s an idea girl can’t compete unless it’s between other
girls? Which is why we’ve got #squadgoals as a way of weighing up each group of
women and deciding who’s best; so similar to the magazine polls of ‘who wore it
hashtag. Tweeting about the hope of #squad dying in 2016 and women tweet back
sharing a similar wish. The slim and whiteness of T Swizzle’s squad carries a
conversation of how damaging it would be as a young girl right now. There’s the
message of being valued or part of a squad; you’ve got to be white, thin and
blonde. Or atleast in Taylor Swifts crew. *It should be noted Zendaya is part
of the squad who goes on to fight Selena, but that doesn’t stick in people’s
minds.* Then there’s the ‘your friends are shit compared to mine ha ha ha’. You know, that this-girl-is-better-than-you thing?
girl empowerment isn’t about segregating women into groups. We’re to stand together against everything telling us
to hate each other, fight between each other and pas
‘higher power’. Girls don’t just stab each other in the back or fight between
hit by a bus before she saw the light, so I think we can skip that step.
all-inclusive girl gang that promotes girl support and power, than squads
pitted against each other.