Raven said she appreciates the conversation her remarks, on Oprah Winfrey’s Where Are They Now, started; however, she would like the discourse to be a bit more respectful.
“Keep your disrespectful, mean, hurtful, words in a diary for yourself. Personal attacking is not needed, and no matter what race, nationality, culture, or womb you came out of; strive for respect,” read a note on Raven’s Facebook page.
Many people were surprised by Raven’s POV, when she shared that she doesn’t like being labeled “African-American” or “lesbian,” even though she is in a same-sex relationship.
Raven explained that she doesn’t identify with Africa and that her experience has been that of an American; however, some interpreted her words as an attempt to distance herself from Black culture.
That resulted in essays, articles, news reports, tweets and blog posts about Raven and race.
Raven, who later clarified that she never denied being Black, said those who came before her — no matter their ethnicity — knew how to express themselves without all the anger.
“Our ancestors of all races had the courage to stand up for what they believed in no matter what the fight,” she wrote. “Back then I hope the motto wasn’t… ‘the more haters the better.’”
Despite the delivery, Raven, who said her mother reads the hateful posts by critics, reiterated that she’s glad folks are discussing race, ethnicity and what it really means to be African-American.
“I’m glad there are conversations happening. Our generation tends to stay comfortable, at times, with issues and topics that need to be addressed,” she said.