Last night, Malcolm Nance, a former CIA analyst with a blue checkmark and over 800,000 followers, demanded his fans harass a black woman on Twitter. And they did, in droves. This morning, that woman has been forced to lock down her Twitter account, many of her friends and followers have been targeted, and most of us have either been blocked by Mr. Nance, or blocked him ourselves.
Why? Why did Malcolm Nance, a regular on cable news shows, an expert featured in the documentary “Unfit,” turn his myriad of followers against a black woman on Twitter? Because he misread a tweet.
The black woman is Queen Bee, the creator of KHive, and KHiveForJoe, a grassroots group of men and women who support Kamala Harris and Joe Biden. Bee does not have a blue checkmark, she doesn’t receive the stellar Twitter support service that verified accounts do, she’s just an activist and writer, a black woman with a wicked sense of humor, and a passion for elevating other black women.
Bee was conversing with someone on Twitter about Bernie Sanders’ supporters and their calls for a “revolution.” Anyone who has ever interacted with an ardent Bernie fan has most likely seen the comments about public hangings and guillotines. They want violence in the streets, as long as they can stay in their homes, safe and sound, typing on social media. And that was the subject of Bee’s Twitter chat with a friend.
Here are the tweets Malcolm Nance decided were so violent, they warranted mass reporting and harassment.
The conversation was about cosplay revolutionaries. I call them “Sarandonites,” after Susan Sarandon who, from the comfort of her wealthy and privileged life, called for a revolution, and said Trump would bring it so don’t vote for Hillary.
Malcolm Nance read the third tweet, got it completely wrong, and tweeted this:
Malcolm Nance has 818,000 followers. He wanted all of those people, all 818,000, to swarm a black woman on Twitter because he misread her tweet. It worked.
Oddly, in 2017, Nance posted a tweet that seemed to muse about ISIS bombing a Trump property:
According to Snopes, this is not what Malcolm Nance meant at all, he was sharing a “threat assessment.” Snopes concluded “We found no evidence to support the claim that Nance was advocating a terrorist strike on a Trump-licensed building in Istanbul. Instead, based on Nance’s current high profile position as a counterterrorism expert and his decades-long career of military service fighting terrorism, it’s not credible to assert that his tweet, while perhaps poorly worded, was in fact advocating terrorism.“
Malcolm Nance chose not to extend the courtesy Snopes gave him for his ISIS tweet when he demanded 818,000 people mass report a black woman. Malcolm Nance certainly did not use his analytical skills when he misread Queen Bee’s tweet and sent his followers after her en masse.
Most of who watched this horror show happen in real time tried to explain to Nance why he was wrong, and why what he was doing was harmful. His response? “I can read.” Rather than admit he screwed up, rather than admit what he was doing was abusive, he chose to ignore facts, and used his power to oppress and harass a black woman on Twitter.
Queen Bee will be okay, she always is. This is not the first time Bee has been targeted for simply being a black woman who supports Kamala Harris, and it most likely won’t be the last. And those of us in the KHive, those of us who follow Bee and share her work, and buy her tee shirts, and support Kamala Harris and Joe Biden, will be targeted as well.
A member of KHive, Tiff, wrote the following today:
We are an organically formed group built out of admiration & support for Kamala Harris. She is who we uplift, show love to & defend each and every day. Let’s keep our focus there. As a group we aren’t always going to agree but let’s channel Kamala’s positive energy.
This is KHive. Black, white, women and men, all sexual orientations, all are welcome. We’re a family, and like a family, we may bicker. We may disagree. But at the end of the day, like a family, we will always support each other, lift each other up, defend each other, and channel Kamala’s positive energy and calls for unity.