American media outlet Washington Post came under criticism on Wednesday (August 19) for an article that seemingly conflated Democratic vice-presidential candidate, Kamala Harris’ Jamaican ancestral lineage, with National Heroine Nanny of the Maroons.
The ‘bizarre feature’, which declared Nanny the ‘Harriet Tubman of Jamaica’, delved into the history of the legendary Maroon, but failed to justify why she was mentioned at all—which confused many readers, especially Jamaican Twitter users.
The article gave little mention to Harris’ Jamaican family outside of imagery, which further fuelled the chaotic attempt to fuse both personas.
“As Republicans question whether Democratic vice-presidential candidate Sen. Kamala D. Harris (Calif.), whose father was an immigrant from Jamaica and whose mother was an immigrant from India, is black or even a descendant of enslaved black people, they may want to consider the remarkable history of Nanny of the Maroons, a national hero in Jamaica,” the article began.
Jamaicans and the wider Caribbean diaspora outright questioned the Washington Post’s connection between Harris and Nanny, as there is no known genealogical link between the two women.
In a way, some Twitter users have sought to rationalise the feature as an introduction to Jamaican history for American readers on the heel of Harris’ monumental nomination.
Where the lines fail to overlap is why, out of all the influential Jamaican women to choose from, was Nanny specifically used?
Others expressed their immediate offense to the feature, including the image of Nanny from the Jamaican $500 note juxtaposed beside Harris, and called on the Washington Post to delete the article.
More still, resorted to trolling WaPo, offering their own historical tidbits.
“This is like saying Trump is from New York, where Captain America is also from,” one user replied.
“Joe Biden is from Delaware, where the Route 40 Killer murdered at least 5 women in 1987 and 1988. Same level of relevance,” another man commented.
How do you feel about the article, BUZZ fam?