Yesterday, the U.S. Treasury Department announced that abolitionist and Black liberator Harriet Tubman will appear on the front of the $20 bill, while notorious slave-owning President Andrew Jackson will be moved to the back in 2020.
According to Atlanta Black Star, Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew was criticized in the past by feminist groups for retracting a proposal to put an esteemed woman on the $10 bill. This promise to put a woman on the $10 bill would keep abolitionist Alexander Hamilton on the back but have a woman on the front. The smash Broadway hit Hamilton changed his mind and influenced his newest decision.
Atlanta Black Star reported that this announcement was met with mixed — and bigoted — reactions from users on social media, political pundits and others. One of the most notable was former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson, who wanted Tubman on the $2 bill instead.
Some Twitter trolls had the worst possible response to the announcement. Many of them claimed “white genocide” and a “war on whites.”
Twitter user @extrahotcheese claims that bills with Tubman will be darkened similar to a minstrel caricature.
— F3AR (@ExtraHotCheese) April 20, 2016
This racist Twitter user implies that Black people use food stamps the most, even though the Huffington Post and many others have reported that whites use the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program program the most. In fact, the Huffington Post reported in 2015 that 40.2 percent of the program benefits goes to whites.
Harriet Tubman should have been on the $20 Food Stamp.
— #MAGAMan (@MAGAMan_X) April 20, 2016
Twitter user @DathanScroggs is claiming white genocide in an effort to defend Jackson — slave owner, Native American mass murderer and much more.
— Dathan Scroggs (@DathanScroggs) April 20, 2016
This user says Tubman is just too unattractive.
#HarrietTubman on the $20 is clearly a conspiracy to force a cashless society. Race aside, she's ugly
— Alt Right (@_AltRight_) April 20, 2016
User @DarklyEnlightLM calls Tubman a “mudskin” and proclaims there is a “war on white” people.
— Lord Humungus (@DarklyEnlightLM) April 20, 2016
That was only the tip of the iceberg of racist backlash. However, there were also lots of laughs and anticipation for the new currency.
User @pjhoody points out the strange dilemma racists will face in 2020.
Racists are going to be PISSED when they gotta use a Tubman $20 to purchase klan sheets
— pj (@pjhoody) April 20, 2016
@feminewbie wants a more bad-ass Harriet Tubman on her $20 bill.
I hope the new Harriet Tubman bill looks like this pic.twitter.com/gYbFR0Pn8X
— newbz (@feminewbie) April 20, 2016
ME: HEADED TO THE STRIP CLUB IT LI—
— Xavier D'Leau (@XavierDLeau) April 20, 2016
User @VictorPopeJr beleives that Tubman may be needed again if Republican front runner Donald Trump becomes president.
Its 8+ years before Harriet Tubman is put on the 20? That's two Trump terms. By then we fuck around and be slaves again and need her forreal
— Victor Pope Jr (@VictorPopeJr) April 20, 2016
"Yes, I'll have one confederate flag."
*slides Tubman $20 across counter* pic.twitter.com/lOgW2Speci
— pj (@pjhoody) April 20, 2016
Journalist and news pundit Ronan Farrow pokes fun of the recent whitewashing and diversity issues in Hollywood.
Hollywood realizing there's a great Harriet Tubman movie waiting to happen, figuring out how it can star Scarlett Johansson.
— Ronan Farrow (@RonanFarrow) April 20, 2016