Since Twitter emerged less than a decade ago, society has seen its fair share of derogatory, racist, sexist and overall offensive tweets.
But nothing takes the cake like the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s (AJC) Oct. 23 tweet: “$1M GA Lottery winner Willie Lynch can get 40 acres and a whole lotta mules.” The tweet linked to an article about local lottery winners, so it begs the question: Why the “40 acres and a mule” pun?
The blatant illustration of racism and mockery hits the core of many Black Americans who are descedants of slaves. During the American Civil War, Blacks felt that they had a right to own the land they worked on as slaves, thus the government gifted 40 acres of land and a mule to some.
However, the “gift” was taken back after the war; the land, and in some cases the mules, were repossessed by the government and returned to white owners.
Racism is appalling enough, even more so when it becomes the center of a celebratory moment. The AJC offered “deep regrets” in a tweeted apology that replaced the deleted, tasteless tweet, telling followers they would handle the issue internally. Could someone be getting fired? And is that enough punishment for the offensive tweet?
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(Photos: Atlanta Journal Constitution via Twitter)