Oprah Winfrey knew it was going down the minute Raven Symoné started.
But before she could stop the That’s So Raven star, Symoné marched head first into truly controversial, and potentially career threatening territory.
During a recent interview for Winfrey’s Where Are They Now? program, she declared that she was simply tired of being “labeled.”
Said Symoné, “I don’t want to be labeled ‘gay’, I want to be labeled ‘a human who loves humans.’”
She added, “I’m an American. I’m not an African American; I’m an American.”
And then Oprah tried to throw out an “anti-controversy life-line”.
Winfrey sputtered, “Don’t set up Twitter on fire. Oh, my lord. What did you just say?”
Raven could have simply said that she didn’t believe in letting other people label her and that she wanted to be her own person.
However, Symoné decided it was time everyone knew exactly where she was coming from.
“I don’t know where my roots go to. I don’t know how far back they go. I don’t know what country in Africa [my ancestors are] from, but I do know that my [American] roots are in Louisiana. I’m an American. And that’s a colorless person.”
— PopWrapped (@PopWrapped) October 6, 2014
Raven will no doubt set black Americans on edge with her comments, not to mention gay Americans and persons who are both black AND gay.
But the 28-year-old former child star simply wants everyone to understand that she rejects preexisting labels that she personally does not identify with.
Is Raven Symoné on to something? Should people of color and others be more thoughtful about what labels they accept (or reject)?
Or did she fail to take key factors into consideration before making her declarations to Oprah?
— VibeMagazine (@VibeMagazine) October 6, 2014
It’s possible she may not get as much flak for her “gay label” remark as pansexuality is an increasingly acknowledged form of human sexuality.
However the “I’m not African-American” remark, which comes on the heels of Pharrell’s remarks, may lead to a rather heated debate.
At least, among those people other than Raven Symoné who label themselves as African American and people of color.