The Outrage Over Terry Crews' Tweet Is Only Getting Started

Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Terry Crews sparked controversy in June 2020 when he posted a tweet about the Black Lives Matter movement and the protests demanding justice for George Floyd. Crews tweeted, "Defeating White supremacy without White people creates Black supremacy. Equality is the truth. Like it or not, we are all in this together." 

Crews' Black Lives Matter tweet missed the mark for many and he was encouraged to rethink his message. Most of all, people took issue with the term "Black supremacy." 

Everybody Hates Chris alum Tyler James Williams responded, "No one is calling 4 black supremacy & the narrative that we are hurts our cause & our people," while someone else said, "Black supremacy don't exist. There is no history of our people killing, enslaving, and making laws to instill power for 400 years for generations."

Others thought his message was similar to "All Lives Matter," a controversial phrase criticized for missing the intent of Black Lives Matter. "The point of Black Lives Matter isn't to suggest that black lives should be or are more important than all other lives. Instead, it's simply pointing out that black people's lives are relatively undervalued in the US — and more likely to be ended by police — and the country needs to recognize that inequity to bring an end to it," as Vox's German Lopez pointed out.

So has Twitter let Crews off the hook? It looks like the outrage over his tweet is just getting started.

Celebrities call Terry Crews out for his tweet

Twitter turned against Terry Crews for his Black Lives Matter tweet almost as soon as he hit send. Someone quipped, "Delete your account." Others reminded the Brooklyn Nine-Nine star that sometimes, it's OK to say nothing at all, while some fans shared the meme of Ice Cube saying, "this was special." And Keep It host, Ira Madison, simply wrote, "Please stop tweeting." 

Fellow actors also chimed in, including Orlando Jones. "Black supremacy? We represent 13% of US population, hold no institutional power & gaslight our coworkers," he said. "We got 99 problems and your math isn't the only 1." 

Insecure star Amanda Seales said Crews "tweets and previous actions are a demonstration of anti-blackness," citing as proof his dismissal of Gabrielle Union's racism allegations about America's Got Talent.

During a January 2020 appearance on Good Morning America, Crews said he didn't think the set was racist. "That was never my experience. In fact, it was the most diverse place I have ever been in my 20 years of entertainment," he stated. The Michigan native later apologized over criticism that his comments invalidated Union's experience.

Terry Crews fights back at the criticism

Terry Crews took issue with the blowback and responded to the criticism in a series of tweets. "I believe it is important we not suffer from groupthink, and we keep minds of our own, and be allowed to ask difficult questions to each other," he wrote. "I believe this dialogue is important as we get through this trauma together. I love you." Crews added, "Please know that everything I've said comes from a spirit of love and reconciliation, for the Black community first, then the world as a whole, in hopes to see a better future for Black people." 

Crews also clarified his comment about "Black supremacy," writing, "I was not saying Black supremacy exists, because it doesn't. I am saying if both Black and Whites don't continue to work together — bad attitudes and resentments can create a dangerous self-righteousness. That's all."

It should be noted that Crews has shared other messages about George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man who died while in Minneapolis police custody on May 25, 2020, which set off protests across the United States.

George Floyd's death hit Terry Crews 'deep'

Before Terry Crews wrote his controversial tweets, he released an Instagram video in response to George Floyd's death, noting how he was broken up over the death. He also mentioned that, as a back man, he could be seen as a threat by police or other people who could do him harm. Crews said, "Any sudden move could mean my life. I know this, because no one's going to talk to me. They're just going to shoot."

He added, "This George Floyd incident has really got to me deep. I haven't been able to sleep. And when you do nod off, you wake up thinking, 'What if the police come to me?'"

He also told NBC News in June 2020, "I've been victimized since I was kid. I mean, being a black man in America, there's so many things that I had to blink past in order to make it and continue to exist. Most of the time as black men, we are not recognized as victimized until we're dead."

It's clear that Crews has thought a lot about the Black Lives Matter movement and George Floyd's death, and he isn't the only one to do so — in fact, Michael Jordan has offered up a plan to ease pain in America.