Twitter Responds To Supreme Court Ruling With #BeckyWithTheBadGrades

After the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the University of Texas in a landmark affirmative action case Thursday, people on Twitter have been shading plaintiff Abigail Fisher with a Lemonade reference, calling her #BeckyWithTheBadGrades.

After Fisher was denied a spot in UT's freshman class in 2008, she sued the school, claiming that she was rejected based solely on her race and that less qualified minority students were admitted instead. Fisher v. University of Texas has been in and out of the Supreme Court for several years, and Thursday's decision in favor of the school upholds the ability of higher education institutions to consider race in admissions decisions.

The trending hashtag (which was started by @SheBeShonuff) throws Fisher some subtle shade. On Lemonade, Beyoncé suggests her cheating lover call "Becky with the good hair." The lyric is about more than blowouts: "Becky" isn't a single person, but “the epitome of a beauty aesthetic that excludes Black women,” as Simone Drake, an associate professor at Ohio State University, told Fusion.

By invoking the Beyoncé lyric, Twitter users are suggesting that Fisher wouldn't have gotten into the competitive school at all. In June, New York Times Magazine writer Nikole Hannah-Jones reported for ProPublica that Fisher's grades were lower than many who earned admission to the school. But, Hannah-Jones noted, "It's true that the university, for whatever reason, offered provisional admission to some students with lower test scores and grades than Fisher. Five of those students were black or Latino. Forty-two were white."
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In December, Black UT students and alumni shared photos of their diplomas with the hashtag #StayMadAbby after Justice Antonin Scalia suggested that Black scientists typically attend less prestigious and less rigorous schools.
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