The Nation of Islam, an extremist antisemitic group ran by Louis Farrakhan, was banned from Twitter for criticizing mRNA vaccines. Twitter previously declined to ban Farrakhan’s personal account or the group account for their routine harassment of Jewish people.
Twitter moved to ban the account last week after being targeted for promoting “misinformation.” In reaction to the ban, a high-ranking member in the group tweeted, “Unsurprisingly, Twitter, Inc. has suspended The Nation of Islam’s official account: @OfficialNOI.”
A report cited by the White House this month said that 12 Twitter accounts are responsible for 65 percent of supposed anti-vaccine content. One of the 12 listed was Rizza Islam, a Nation of Islam member. While Twitter took action against the group after perpetual mRNA vaccines criticism, it remained silent on its previous anti-semitism.
A Twitter spokesman did not respond to a request for comment.
Nation of Islam has a history of attacking Jews and making incendiary comments. Farrakhan said at a speech in 2018, “the powerful Jews are my enemy” and “white folks are going down. And Satan is going down. And Farrakhan, by God’s grace, has pulled the cover off of that Satanic Jew and I’m here to say your time is up, your world is through.”
In 2018, Farrakhan tweeted a video clip of a speech where he compared Jews to termites and called them stupid. He captioned the video: “I’m not an anti-Semite. I’m anti-Termite.”
Even though his tweet violated Twitter’s policy around “dehumanizing” tweets, which specifically includes “comparing groups to animals and viruses (animalistic),” a Twitter spokesperson told BuzzFeed News the rules were not yet taken effect at the time of the tweet, so Farrakhan’s language was not in violation of any extant policy. Farrakhan is still on the platform as of this writing.
Several Democrats have previously held ties to the radical group, such as House Majority Whip James Clyburn, D-S.C., who was on a stage in 2011 with Farrakhan. In 2018, Rep. Danny Davis, D-Ill., called Farrakhan “an outstanding human being” who “does outstanding things.”
Another notable Farrakhan ally is Democrat Georgia Sen. Raphael Warnock, who said in 2013 his group’s “voice has been important for the development of Black theology.” Warnock’s office did not respond to a request for comment.
The black nationalist group and its leader frequently tweet offensive content. Farrakhan once said, “The FBI has been the worst enemy of Black advancement” and “The Jews have control over those agencies of government.”