Normani has addressed the racist social media posts by former bandmate Camila Cabello and opened up about being hurt.
The 23-year-old breakout pop star is the latest cover star for Rolling Stone and cleared the air on a few issues. Namely, she didn’t like how Cabello, who used to be in the group Fifth Harmony with her, waited to speak out on her racist posts and the bullying she endured.
“I want to be very clear about what I’m going to say on this uncomfortable subject and figured it would be best to write out my thoughts to avoid being misconstrued, as I have been in the past,” she said in an email statement to the publication. “I struggled with talking about this because I didn’t want it to be a part of my narrative, but I am a black woman, who is a part of an entire generation that has a similar story.”
The “Motivation” singer cited the harassment she’s had to put up with due to bigoted trolls. In her words, it was daily.
“I have been tolerating discrimination far before I could even comprehend what exactly was happening. Direct and subliminal hatred has been geared towards me for many years solely because of the color of my skin,” she said.
Normani felt let down that Cabello, 22, was slow to have her back. If the situations had been reversed, she would not have hesitated to do the same.
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@normani is a superstar in the making who counts Rihanna and Janet Jackson as fans. Right now, she’s figuring out what it means to be on her own. “I’m at a loss for words because it’s just all of the women that made up who I am,” she says. “They respect what I do. Like, they actually respect what I do and want me to win." Click the link in our bio to read our cover story on the singer. #WomenShapingTheFuture Photograph by @campbelladdy Hair by @yusefhairnyc Makeup by @rokaelbeauty Nails by @yvett_g Styled by @v.msmith Fashion Editor @lovingrachel
“It would be dishonest if I said that this particular scenario didn’t hurt me. It was devastating that this came from a place that was supposed to be a safe haven and a sisterhood, because I knew that if the tables were turned I would defend each of them in a single heartbeat.”
Normani also noted that Cabello took her time before she did what was right. The “Havanna” singer offered apologies for her racist Tumblr posts which included her using the N-word last year. The accusations of racism had been persistent for even longer, reportedly since 2012.
“It took days for her to acknowledge what I was dealing with online and then years for her to take responsibility for the offensive tweets that recently resurfaced. Whether or not it was her intention, this made me feel like I was second to the relationship that she had with her fans.”
Normani resolved that she would not let this situation make her bitter. She felt hopeful and that it could be a learning process.
“I believe that everyone deserves the opportunity for personal growth. I really hope that an important lesson was learned in this,” the singer said. “I hope there is genuine understanding about why this was absolutely unacceptable.”