Anyone who opens themselves up to any sort of interaction with the internet is probably aware that saying one “wrong” thing can lure a bunch of angry strangers to your email account, Twitter page, or that weird spot on Facebook where you can see the messages that people who aren’t your friends have sent. Fox News contributor Eboni K. Williams learned that firsthand recently when she dared to go on the air and criticize Donald Trump’s response to the Charlottesville neo-Nazi rally and the murder of Heather Heyer. After that, she says her website was hit with “over 150 emails” (much more than the typical 10-15 she gets) and nearly all of them were “seething, scathing” responses to her Trump comments.
As reported by Variety, Williams said that some messages said that she “shouldn’t be allowed to walk the streets of New York,” that Harlem (where she lives) “needs to watch out,” and general threats about how she should “meet [her] maker soon.” It has even gotten to the point that the publisher of her upcoming book demanded that she request additional security from the network that could accompany her to and from the Fox News office. Also, one of the reasons that this has been so shocking to Williams is that even when her viewers disagree with her arguments, any messages they send will “often praise her ability to formulate her arguments and present them on-air”—which sounds like an appropriately condescending thing for a Fox News viewer to do.
Williams has stuck to her arguments since the backlash, saying that it’s “tacit compliance” if you “don’t speak out and condemn” people like the Nazis who marched in Charlottesville, so even if Trump doesn’t actually approve of what the white supremacists are doing, she says it’s “irrelevant” because “these people think they are acting on behalf of the President of the United States.”