When Serena Williams announced she was engaged to Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, social media lit up with reactions, with many questioning why she decided to settle down with a white man.
The 22-time Grand Slam champion revealed the news on Reddit Thursday, Dec. 29, in a poem called, “I Said Yes,” which told the story of how Ohanian proposed. While many fans congratulated the soon-to-be spouses, several Twitter users shared their irritation about Wiliams’ choice in a life partner.
@oliviazao hoped the applause was strictly for the engagement rather than her impending nuptials to a white man.
I hope we're cheering Serena Williams on because she's happily engaged and not because she's with a white man…
— tinkerbell ✨ (@oliviazao) December 30, 2016
Yogi reflected on Williams’ past relationships with Black celebrities, including rappers Drake and Common. Then, she deemed Ohanian, whose parents have ties to Armenia and Germany, demonic.
Serena Williams has been linked to every Black man in the industry and she turns around and marries the white devil. I can't.
— YOGI (@yogihoagie) December 29, 2016
@_EnvyT_ expressed frustration over the matter.
Im Disappointed In Serena! That White Boy Can't Handle All That Ass! She Know Better! ?
— ✨EyeC?ndy✨ (@_EnvyT_) December 29, 2016
Lu-Senpai wondered when the discussion would begin about Williams’ apparent inability to sustain a relationship with a Black man, thus leading her to choose a white partner.
What time we gonna address Serena not being strong enough to handle a dominant black king and settling for a mayonaise boy?
— Lu-Senpai (@LudeyLu) December 29, 2016
@Tweetcubey blamed Black men for allowing Williams to get engaged to a white man.
Black men really let a white dude steal a Gem like Serena Williams…smh
— A Nigerian.. (@Tweetcubey) December 30, 2016
@GloccRivers recognized the day as a time for grief.
Today is a day for mourning we lost Serena Williams to a white man smh first Eve now Serena
— ?? (@GloccRIvers) December 29, 2016
Saba was far less ambiguous in his reaction.
Smh!!!!! First Eve… Now Serena ????? these white boys pullin all the sistas… Yes I'm mad… Very mad!!!!!!!
— Saba (@SabaSoulchild) December 30, 2016
Such responses led many to defend the tennis pro and Ohanian.
Neechi Sosa thought the anger was a relic of another decade.
Y'all really mad Serena Williams got engaged to a white man? It's her business smh this ain't 1956
— Neechi Sosa❄️ (@BigNeechi) December 29, 2016
@xjetblackqueenx called out the hypocrisy of Black men slamming Williams’ fiancé.
Blk men criticizing Serena Williams for getting engaged to a white man are the same men who prefer white women over blk women
— 07·21·17 (@xjetblackqueenx) December 29, 2016
However, not everyone reacted so fiercely.
Stank Castle could see why Williams would be attracted to an entrepreneur.
Serena engaged to a white dude!? He the cofounder of Reddit tho? I mean I can't be mad at her pic.twitter.com/fuHonjToqP
— Stank Castle (@Mr_Trilliam) December 29, 2016
@Juan_Migg seemed surprised by the athlete’s fiancé.
SERENA WILLIAMS IS NOW ENGAGED TO THE PASTY WHITE MAN WHO MADE REDDIT. WHAT???
— dad (@Juan_Migg) December 29, 2016
Rod injected some humor into the discussion.
Serena got engaged. That's the first white person to hold her to love in tennis history. pic.twitter.com/pD5c0jJxHK
— Rod (@rodimusprime) December 30, 2016