The Chainsmokers’ song “Paris” becomes TikTok’s pro-abortion anthem

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From airport transfers to guest room invites, TikTok users around the world are flooding the app with offers of support for American women in need of abortions. But a lot of the videos don’t mention abortion at all. Instead, they refer to a hypothetical ‘getaway’, ‘camping trip’ or ‘wine tasting experience’ – all examples of ‘algospeak’ or internet codes with hidden meanings.

Clips from Gen Z’s favorite app also have something in common: text overlay set to the song “Paris” by the Chainsmokers.

DJ duo Alex Pall and Drew Taggart’s 2017 bop was inspired by “sentimental longing for a reality that isn’t authentic,” the band said when “Paris” has been freed. But while the electro-pop hit started out as a tale of two lovers’ escapades, it’s now become a rallying cry for abortion access because of a line: “If we go down, then we go down together”.

The people creating the videos span age groups, locations, and backgrounds. In a video, Waterville Mayor Jay Coelho job that “camping is legal in Maine,” noting that his city has two “campsites” or abortion centers available. In another case, a woman who “isn’t in a safe condition” said she would contribute “for gas, lots of hotel points and a comfortable car to take us” to a date. Others offered accommodation in the United States, Canada and Europe.

Clips are the latest example of emerging TikTok trends – with an algorithm tricking users into recreating content after a video goes viral. But it also underscores how people seem to be searching for a sense of belonging and togetherness amid deepening political divides. Hailing the Chainsmokers as “our unexpected pro-choice kings,” as one user commented on TikTok, people described get emotional watching the videos.

After being made aware of the trend, the Chainsmokers said over the weekend that while they never imagined the five-year-old song would become an anthem for abortion rights, it was “nice to see our music plays a role in bringing people together.

After the Supreme Court overturned decades of precedent in last week’s ruling, access to abortion care has become unequal across the country. About half of the states will continue to protect the right. More than a dozen will have “trigger” bans taking effect within a month. Other states doubled down on restrictions after the ruling was released. Overall, 52% of women of childbearing age in the United States will face greater abortion restrictions.

Abortion is now prohibited in these states. See where the laws have changed.

Abortion access gaps have spurred a movement across social media – with a specific soundtrack. On TikTok, the lyrics of “Paris” have been turned into hashtags like #if we go down, then we’ll go down together and #we go together. As of early Thursday, the two had racked up a combined 78.5 million views, while the song had been used in more than 136,600 videos.

Although the clips appear to be well-meaning, some users have warned against accepting offers from strangers, in part because some states may make it illegal to help people seeking abortions. For example, people who do it in Alabama could risk be “prosecuted for conspiracy if they help someone get an abortion or even consider getting an abortion in another state,” say Rep. Chris England, chairman of the Alabama Democrats, said the Twitter.

“These people have just taken to social media and publicly announced that they are a safe haven for abortion seekers. Anti-abortionists are watching them now. Law enforcement will learn their names,” said activist Kiki Djarin in a Twitter feed.

Abortion is illegal for millions of people. Will Big Tech help prosecute him?

Nonetheless, after being told about the TikTok trend using “Paris,” the Chainsmokers said the song would “make so much more sense every time we perform it.”

“If we go down, we go down together. last night in atlanta and every night from now on,” the group caption a video after his show Monday in Georgia.


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