While Kamala Harris has received a ton of support following her historic candidacy for president, there has, of course, also been the obligatory negative chorus from trolling detractors, especially on social media.
One of the leading, most disgraceful voices among those deplorable online critics is Tariq Nasheed, whose recent tweet implying that the Black California senator was pandering to African-Americans went viral for all the wrong reasons. The mocking tweet posted Wednesday and featured brief video footage of Harris rocking a ponytail while jamming to a Cardi B song that can be heard playing in the background.
The implication that Nasheed — whose misogynistic exploits on social media have rightfully earned him the reputation of someone who hates Black women — incorrectly leaped to was that Harris was “taking a page out of the Hilary [sic] Clinton playbook on how to pander to Black voters. Kamala has pulled her hair back so she can show her ‘ethnic edges’, and she’s ‘dancing’ to rap music.”
While many people immediately called out Nasheed for his senselessly incorrect misogynistic tweet, there was one unlikely person in particular who responded on Twitter with a decisive and definitive clap-back: former Vermont governor and one-time presidential candidate Howard Dean.
“STFU,” the tweet from Dean’s account that was posted Wednesday night began. “[S]he gets to do whatever she wants with her hair.”
While Nasheed will probably incorrectly see this coverage as an attempt by a Black-owned media company to shame a Black man, Dean’s response was actually more indicative of a growing intolerance for the mistreatment of Black women — a voting bloc expected to play a major role in the 2020 election — and women as a whole. Many people don’t want to validate Nasheed’s hatred by providing coverage of him. But in light of the disastrous 2016 election that was in many ways dictated by the prolific spread of misinformation — not unlike what Nasheed is doing here — it is important to identify those who participate in its purveyance and recognize those voices as irrelevant. Still, Dean clearly felt that an appropriate clap-back was in order.
The Root’s Very Smart Brothas described Nasheed in part as “America’s most prominent hotep,” which, loosely defined, refers to “someone who’s loudly, conspicuously and obnoxiously pro-black but anti-progress.” Dean, on the other hand, has long been decidedly progressive. It would seem that when the former governor caught wind of Nasheed’s ridiculous tweet, he, like many other people, just couldn’t help himself from setting the record straight.
About 99.9 percent of the reactions to Dean’s tweet have been echoed his sentiment while, of course, Nasheed alone represented the remaining 0.1 percent. Keep scrolling below to see how Twitter users helped Dean drag Nasheed to hotep hell.