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Diamond & Silk
| Parroting squawkbox|
|And a dirty dozen more|
| Someone is wrong on|
|—Diamond & Silk, defending racist Steve King at a press conference|
Lynnette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson, better known as Diamond & Silk, an American vlogging and conservative-commentary sister-duo, are currently two of Donald Trump's most visible fangirls. They have a considerable presence on social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube, among others.
All onboard the Trump Train!
The daughters of a pair of televangelists based out of North Carolina, Hardaway and Richardson were actually both Democrats originally, but Donald Trump's presidential campaign caused them both to immediately switch over to the Republican Party in 2015. They both believed him to be someone who would work for African-American people and would "actually get stuff done." And they've been rabid Trump supporters ever since.
Though the two sisters were never officially a part of the Trump Campaign, they have made appearances at several of his rallies, notably joining him onstage in Raleigh, North Carolina on December 4, 2015, and serving as the opening speakers at a rally in Biloxi, Mississippi on January 2, 2016. They encouraged Democrats and Independents to vote for Trump with a
bait and switch "Ditch and Switch" campaign.
Right-wing media darlings
Being associated with Trump gave Diamond & Silk the wingnut stamp of approval. They've been omnipresent on conservative news media, becoming Fox News regulars and being interviewed by the likes of Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham. They've also appeared on Breitbart, The Daily Caller, Newsmax, TheBlaze, CNS News, and InfoWars, being interviewed by Alex Jones himself.
In March 2016, Diamond & Silk got into a small spat with Rush Limbaugh, who was not aware that the two sisters had switched over to the Republican Party and, because he thought they were still Democrats, made an implication on his show that their support for Trump wasn't genuine. They sent him an open message via a YouTube video to "set him straight" where they confirmed that they had indeed become Republicans but kept it quiet to avoid drawing too much attention from the "GOP establishment" and the "mainstream media." Limbaugh would later retract his statements and congratulated the two for their mission to convert Democrats to Republicans.
You gotta get off the plantation, I tell ya!
Diamond & Silk's pro-Trump rhetoric comes with large dollops of anti-Democrat bullshit. Their primary argument is that the Democratic Party is a "plantation" that represses African-American voters who hold different opinions, and that the silent majority need to fight back by supporting Trump. They seem to be convinced that the Democratic Party is trying to "condition" black people into hating the Republican Party so they can keep voting Democrat.
They present themselves as primary examples of why Trump totally isn't racist: "How could Trump have a race problem when these two vibrant, independent black women like him so much?" They think anyone who dares to call Trump a racist is wrong, and anyone who calls them out for supporting him are the actual racists.
- They have called Hillary Clinton a "slave master", a "crook", and an "insult to white people." They have also pushed the already multi-time debunked Uranium One conspiracy theory.
- They have given their support for Trump's proposed border wall.
- In an act of cognitive dissonance, they described the removal of Confederate monuments as a liberal plot to erase history.
- They are anti-gun control; when they spoke at the National Rifle Association's leadership forum in Dallas, Texas in May 2018, they went on a long spiel about how they would keep their guns and would defend the Second Amendment any way they could.
- After Whoopi Goldberg voiced her opposition to waterboarding, they suggested that she try it before criticizing it.
- They called Spike Lee a "gatekeeper of the Democratic plantation" after Lee made remarks criticizing President Trump.
- They claimed that Barack Obama did nothing for the African-American community for his whole eight years in office, and did nothing for Chicago (more bullshit).
- They were once interviewed by John Friend — a noted white nationalist and holocaust denier who has cited Adolf Hitler and Joseph Goebbels his idols — for the American Free Press, a publication that has ties to anti-semitism and the Truther Movement. During that same interview, they accused immigrants of depriving Americans of civil rights and services.
- They endorsed eventual white supremacist Paul Nehlen for the U.S. House of Representatives over Paul Ryan.
It's all a leftist plot!
In April 2018, Diamond & Silk claimed that some of their content on Facebook had been flagged as "unsafe to the community" and also suggested that YouTube blocked some of their content because of their support for Donald Trump. These claims originated from Mark Zuckerberg's congressional hearing in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Representatives Marsha Blackburn and Joe Barton and Senator Ted Cruz accused Zuckerberg of deliberately censoring Diamond & Silk, with Barton in particular claiming that Zuckerberg was targeting conservative bloggers such as Diamond & Silk. Zuckerberg said that it was a mistake and that his team personally contacted the two.
In truth, there has been no evidence that any of this has ever happened, and the censorship claims have since been debunked by CNN and Business Insider, but the sisters persist that it has. They posted a video on YouTube telling off Zuckerberg, claiming that there was nothing "unsafe" about two black women supporting [their] president (to be fair to them, they're not even wrong) and that they weren't "terrorists."
Diamond & Silk go to Washington
Diamond & Silk appeared before the House Judiciary Committee on April 26, 2018 in a hearing about alleged filtering practices of social media. Mostly, they just did a lot of yelling about fake news, liberal bias, and how the whole hearing was stupid and pointless.
Oh, and they lied under oath. When asked if they ever received money from the Trump Campaign, they said they didn't. However, a Federal Election Commission filing showed that the Trump Campaign had, in fact, paid the sisters $1,275 in November 2016 for "field consulting."
They gave a press conference with white nationalist Representative Steve King in 2019 in support of the "so-called Diamond and Silk Act — designed to shift funds from sanctuary cities to homeless veterans — but really King needed them to inoculate him from the whole racism thing."
Diamond & Silk began promoting conspiracy theories and disinformation about the coronavirus. In response to this Fox News has officially cut ties with the MAGA duo, “After what they’ve said and tweeted you won’t be seeing them on Fox Nation or Fox News anytime soon,” a source with knowledge of the matter told The Daily Beast.
- Steve King’s proof he’s not racist? Diamond and Silk. by Dana Milbank (June 12, 2019) The Washington Post.