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NYT Styles calls Michelle Obama an ‘angry black woman’ in a tweet

The tweet was deleted—but the damage was done.


Jessica Machado


Posted on Nov 8, 2016   Updated on May 25, 2021, 3:14 pm CDT

The New York Times Style section sent out a questionable tweet this afternoon to promote a story on First Lady Michelle Obama: “How FLOTUS shed an angry black woman caricature and evolved into a political powerhouse.” 

Screengrab via Twitter

Naturally, people were upset, as Obama, Harvard Law School graduate and beacon of poise and class, has not only never embodied such a caricature, but also, you know, why is the Times Styles section, home to showy white affluence, trying to further such stereotypes in a tweet?

The tweet has since been deleted and replaced with a non-apology. 

Likely, some social media editor made a mistake. However, that doesn’t mean media doesn’t need to understand its blind spots, including our nation’s deeply hurtful stereotypes.  

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*First Published: Nov 8, 2016, 10:26 pm CST