This week, allies of embattled ACLU of North Carolina lobbyist Kristie Puckett-Williams erupted on social media, denouncing the apparent termination of Williams over aggressive and profane comments online. The ACLU of N.C. had initially stood by Williams and said she was simply using her right to free speech.
Carolina Journal reached out to ACLU of N.C. to confirm that she had in fact been terminated but have not heard back by time of publication.
The sudden flurry of comments from Williams and activists close to her suggests that she had been. On Wednesday, Williams said she was “fresh off the plantation,” insinuating ACLU had been like a slave master and that she’d escaped to freedom.
D.D. Crawford, a Democrat lieutenant governor candidate, said he was upset by Williams’ termination.
Emancipate N.C., a group devoted to prison abolition for which Williams is a board member, denounced the ACLU’s decision and said they would reevaluate future collaboration with the ACLU. They also started a hashtag, #westandwithKristie, which some used to voice their disapproval of Williams’ firing. The Duke Energy Foundation and Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation are among the group’s funders.
Despite Williams’ social media behavior being the cause of the controversy, she continued making similar comments. One of the original comments that caused the most blowback was her repeated, detailed suggestion that a conservative radio host perform oral sex on her. After her apparent firing, Williams mused about what part of her comment must have been the problem.
Her racial comments and retweets also continued, as she said, “my words aren’t ever for White people, intentionally” and retweeted someone saying, “racism against white women?!?!?! sign me up!”