Raven-Symoné, co-host of ABC’s The View, landed in hot water last Thursday after her outspoken views on diverse racial names. The 29-year-old has since apologized for not being sensitive enough to others.
People reports that the controversy began when Symoné, along with her The View co-hosts, gave her opinion on diverse names, stemming from a viral video about the most “ghetto” names in America. Symoné indicated that someone’s name would make her consider not hiring a potential candidate.
“I’m very discriminatory against words like the ones they were saying in those names. I’m not about to hire you if your name is Watermelondrea.”
By Sunday, the co-host’s comments backfired so much that she issued a public apology, indicating that she never meant to discriminate against any certain race.
“My comments about discrimination have spun out of control. I have been denied many jobs because of my skin color, body size, and age. Each time I was rejected, my self esteem was negatively effected, so I empathize with those who feel victimized by what I said.”
Symoné also stated that although she made comments about never hiring anyone with what she perceives as a ghetto name, she’s never actually discriminated against anyone herself. She also admitted that as a public figure, she should have been more sensitive to others.
“As an equal opportunity employer, I have never discriminated against a name…. even though I said I would, it’s not true. My comment was in poor taste. My lack of empathy towards name discrimination was uncalled for.”
Huffpost Black Voices reports that not only did Symoné encounter enormous backlash from the public across social media, but that her own father, Christopher Pearman, stated that his daughter, “says some dumb S#%T!”
This isn’t the first time Symoné’s outspoken comments have caused controversy. Earlier this year, she defended Univision host Rodner Figueroa after he claimed that First Lady Michelle Obama resembles an ape. Symoné referred to others, saying that her own resemblance to a bird hasn’t stopped her from succeeding.
“Was he saying it racist-like? Because he said that he voted for her later, and I don’t think he was saying it racist … Michelle, don’t fire me from this right now, but some people look like animals. I look like a bird. So can I be mad if somebody calls me Toucan Sam?”
Although Symoné came to his defense, Figueroa lost his job as host on El Gordo y la Flaca after his derogatory comments, and even lost a supporter in Rosie Perez, Symoné’s former co-host on The View.
In May, Symoné once again sparked a social media outcry when she stated that although it would be wonderful to see a female on the $20 bill, she didn’t think Harriet Tubman, one of the most influential humanitarians and abolitionists of all time, would be appropriate. Her comments came during a discussion on The View about which notable female figure should grace America’s next $20.
“No offense to everyone that’s going to be mad at me for saying this, I don’t like that idea [of Harriet Tubman on the $20]. I think we need to move a bit forward.”
Regardless of her opinionated viewpoints, it seems that Symoné is just what The View needed. Since she joined the show, its ratings have increased. According to critics, she’s steadily on her way to becoming the co-host that viewers “love to hate.”
Meanwhile, Raven-Symoné continues her career as a voice actress. She recently wrapped up the upcoming animated film, Animal Crackers, in which she portrays the voice of Binkley. The film centers around a magical box of Animal Crackers who are the only hope in saving a family circus.
[Photos Courtesy of Jason Kempin / Getty Images & Charley Gallay / Getty Images]