Philadelphia makeup artist Tatiana Ward is best known as BeatFaceHoney, the moniker she’s been using for four years on Instagram, where she’s amassed over 430,000 followers. But those BeatFaceHoney followers were cut off from her Instagram feed for several days after her page was suspended by Instagram, and Ward says it’s all because of a post she made last week in support of Rose Hamid, the Muslim woman who was reportedly ejected from a Donald Trump rally in South Carolina after she stood in silent protest.
Hamid is Ward’s aunt, the younger sister of Ward’s mother. And Ward’s mother, it turns out, is married to Andino Ward, father of the late Michael Moses Ward, also known as MOVE bombing survivor Birdie Africa. Yes, in a strange Philly twist of fate, the woman who has done makeup for Nicki Minaj, whose Instagram work as BeatFaceHoney has been celebrated by Ebony magazine, and whose aunt was Public Enemy Number One of Trump’s supporters for a few days last week was also the half-sister of the sole child survivor of the MOVE bombing.
On one hand, Hamid’s plight became yet more fodder for the mainstream media to lob shots at a seemingly impenetrable and impervious Donald Trump, who thinks we shouldn’t let Muslims into the United States. On the other hand, her story became ammunition for Trump’s loyal army of far right zealots, who went so far as to allege that Hamid is connected to Muslim terrorists and call her “another terrorist-supporting Muslim masquerading as a good American.”
Once Ward saw all of the negative publicity that her aunt was getting, she took to Instagram to let her voice be heard with the following #WCW (that’s Woman Crush Wednesday) message:
This is my My #WCW ❤️ Girl Scout leader. Flight attendant. Little sister to my Mommy. Silly. Devoted. Awesome mom to my three awesome cousins. She, my mom and their other two sisters are ladies I marvel at as they’ve all kept their husbands and marriages for over 20 plus years. And let’s not forget that Aunt Rosie stood up to the big bad wolf this week💪🏽 Total rock star! #RoseHamid is not nearly as meek as this illustration would make her look. In fact, I think she might have done the strongest thing in the world even after they yelled at her and said “DO YOU HAVE A BOMB?!?!?” She smiled and said, “No. Do you?”. This question asked of the lady who insisted that my cousins and I do the nay-nay at her daughters wedding and she can murder the stanky leg like a pro😜 It’s unbelievable to watch the lies that have been spread about her by back wood, inbred, banji bloggers…what’s even more unbelievable is that when I speak to her she’s just as chipper and happy about life amidst all of this attention she’s getting. She’s got one mission: To be in the good graces of God by spreading his real message of peace and love & to be heard🙏🏽 I’m so proud to say she’s doing just that💪🏽 #AuntRosieForPresident 🙌🏽
That was on Wednesday night. When she woke up the next morning, Ward tried logging on to Instagram but was unsuccessful. “Instagram told me that my account was frozen, because I had gone against Instagram policy,” she says. “I clicked to learn more, and it said that my account had been disabled and it listed all of the terms that could cause this. No nudity, no buying likes or followers, and a bunch of other stuff, none of which I had done. Some right wing group must have flagged my page.”
To most of us, a suspended Instagram page is a mere annoyance, but to someone like Ward, it’s huge. After all, her Instagram page is what spawned her career as a “celebrity makeup artist,” and her audience is nothing to sneeze at: Consider that she has more than quadruple the number of followers as Ebony, the very magazine that documented her rise on Instagram. (To give you some other media examples, BeatFaceHoney has more Instagram followers than tech-savvy Wired magazine, the New York Post, and the Los Angeles Times.)
Perplexed by Instagram’s decision to suspend her, Ward contacted the company again and again, trying to get to the bottom of her suspension and, more importantly, to get her page reactivated. Meanwhile, she set up a temporary Instagram page to let the world know what had happened, and even that page got over 8,000 likes over the next few days. She used that page to encourage her friends and fans to contact Instagram on her behalf, and on Monday morning — voila! — she was able to log in. She says she found out from one of her followers who noticed the page was back up, and that she still hasn’t heard a single word from the social media giant.
(It’s worth noting that her post in defense of her aunt would seem to violate one important Instagram rule — no copyrighted material — since the political cartoon she posted comes from the Charlotte Observer. But given that Instagram has reactivated her account, which still contains that cartoon, this wouldn’t seem to be why they suspended BeatFaceHoney. And Instagram hasn’t responded to our request for comment, and they probably won’t.)
“They need to implement some type of better solution before they shut a page down like that, especially a page with over 430,000 Instagram followers,” says Ward. “I’ve represented Instagram well on TV and in magazine interviews, and they need to have a better process and better communication.”
As for her aunt, here’s an interview that Rose Hamid did with BBC:
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