(The Hill) — Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) apparently deleted a tweet in which she praised Will Smith for defending his wife when he slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars.
“#Alopecia nation stand up! Thank you #WillSmith,” Pressley’s tweet said. “Shout out to all the husbands who defend their wives living with alopecia in the face of daily ignorance & insults.”
“Women with baldies are for real men only. Boys need not apply,” she added alongside a photo of herself and her husband, Conan Harris.
On Sunday night, Smith slapped Rock, who was presenting an award at the show, after he made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
“Jada, I love ya. ‘G.I. Jane 2,’ can’t wait to see it,” Rock said, prompting Smith to walk on stage and hit the comedian, then yell “Keep my wife’s name out of your f–king mouth!” when he returned to his seat.
A number of Twitter users criticized Pressley’s tweet for what they characterized as endorsing violence.
The Hill has reached out to Pressley’s office for comment.
Pinkett Smith revealed in 2018 that she had alopecia areata, a disease that causes hair loss.
Pressley has also been open about her struggles with the disease.
“In the fall, when I was getting my hair retwisted, is the first time that I was made aware that I had some patches,” the Massachusetts representative said in 2020 when she revealed her condition. “From there, it accelerated very quickly.”
“I’m very early in my alopecia journey. But I’m making progress every day. And that’s why I’m doing this today,” Pressley also said at the time.
“It’s about self agency. It’s about power. It’s about acceptance. It’s so interesting to me that right now on this journey, what I feel the most unlike myself is when I am wearing a wig. So I think that means I’m on my way.”