Raven-Symone, who played a precocious 3-year-old in the 1980s’ "The Cosby Show" series and starred in her own Disney Channel series 10 years ago, came out as a lesbian on Twitter last week.
Symone, 27, created buzz about her sexuality when she tweeted this on Friday:
Symone's representatives responded to media attention after the tweet.
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"Raven is not getting married. She was just supporting the fact that she heard on NPR that more states legalized gay marriage today," they said, according to CNN.
Soon after, Symone released her own statement.
"I am very happy that gay marriage is opening up around the country and is being accepted," the actress said. "I was excited to hear today that more states legalized gay marriage. I, however am not currently getting married, but it is great to know I can now, should I wish to."
The National Enquirer reported Symone was in a serious relationship with AzMarie Livington, a contestant on "America's Next Top Model," but it is unclear if it is true, as Symone never confirmed that news.
Symone asked for privacy in her personal life at the time but declined to say whether she was gay, angering some gay rights activists.
"Interracial relationships and sex-same relationships are still subjects most famous people of color won’t discuss,"African-American film historian and NYU film professor Donald Bogle told the Daily Beast.
"The response from the black audience is still so unknown that it’s a risk that most really fear taking—and that’s understandable."
A segment of the black community, particularly older African-Americans, has conservative views toward same-sex relationships that trace back to strict Baptist-church teachings.
"Those ultraconservative beliefs can go a long way in deciding who is and who isn’t supported by the black community in Hollywood, Washington, D.C., and beyond," The Daily Beast's Allison Samuels wrote in the story. "Symoné's young age may have also influenced her decision to come out. The National Enquirer posted other stories detailing the 'lesbian affairs' of several other black starlets, and rumors of homosexuality have followed women in black Hollywood, like Queen Latifah for decades.”
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