Twilight fans: still terrible, and still completely insane! On Sunday, FKA twigs (Tahliah Barnett) addressed the wave of racist abuse she's endured on Twitter and other social media platforms—ever since she started dating Twilight star Robert Pattinson. Over two tweets, Barnett's strongly-worded and dignified response read:
I am genuinely shocked and disgusted at the amount of racism that has been infecting my account the past week.— FKA twigs (@FKAtwigs)
Racism is unacceptable in the real world and it's unacceptable online.— FKA twigs (@FKAtwigs) September 28, 2014
Barnett recently became the target of racist Twilight fans who are unhappy that Pattinson has coupled up with a non-white partner, instead of his supposed one-and-only destiny, Kristen Stewart.
Nevermind that Stewart and Pattinson have not been an item for more than a year, following a breakup caused by her widely-reported affair fling with director Rupert Sanders. Nevermind that Kristen has also moved on, and is rumored to be dating her Equals co-star Nicholas Hoult. Nevermind that projecting your own romantic desires on the private lives of celebrities is something that no one over the age of 10 should ever do. Because when it comes down to it, the Pattinson-Barnett relationship is just a convenient excuse for racists to air their disgusting abuse.
@FKAtwigs I do not wish you badly but I hope that a train happens to you for this face of monkey that you have— UnBroKen (@RobstenMyHeart_) September 22, 2014 September 28, 2014 September 29, 2014
This is not the first time that Barnett has spoken publically about the racism and double-standards she's faced as an artist coming from a mixed-race background. In August, she lashed out against a Guardian reporter for boxing her in as an "alt R&B" star along with Kelela, Banks, and SZA. "When I first released music and no one knew what I looked like, I would read comments like: 'I've never heard anything like this before, it's not in a genre.' And then my picture came out six months later, now she's an R&B singer," she said. "I share certain sonic threads with classical music; my song Preface is like a hymn. So let's talk about that. If I was white and blonde and said I went to church all the time, you'd be talking about the 'choral aspect'. But you're not talking about that because I'm a mixed-race girl from south London."
In another interview, she admitted to being singled out as the only mixed-race girl in a Catholic school. "People said horrible things about something I had no control of, which was tough... Half of my life I've had people staring at me because they think I'm funny-looking and ugly. The other half of my life I've had people staring at me because they think I'm fascinating."
FKA twigs' label, Young Turks, has also taken to Twitter, calling the racist abuse "despicable" and "depressingly archaic" while encouraging users to report the abusive parties.
The racist abuse @FKAtwigs is getting on her social networks is despicable and depressingly archaic.— Young Turks (@youngturksrec) September 28, 2014
Up to all of us to help educate the abusive parties on how hateful their views are and that social media actually links back to real people— Young Turks (@youngturksrec) September 28, 2014
In the meantime we can all report, block, and ban the abusive parties from social networks. Love all at YT.— Young Turks (@youngturksrec) September 28, 2014
Michelle Lhooq is an editor at THUMP - @MichelleLhooq