Willow Smith & Brother Jaden Felt Shunned By Black Community For Being 'Weird'
Willow Smith openly admitted that she and her brother, Jaden Smith, 22, felt shunned by the black community for their opposition to gender norms.
In an episode of Red Table Talk on Tuesday, October 13, the 19-year-old, who became an overnight sensation with her hit song, "Whip My Hair," in 2010, said that she would often come across online comments from people saying that the famous siblings were “too weird” because they didn’t live up to the norms of most teenagers their age.
“Specifically with the African American community, I kind of felt like me and Jaden were shunned a little bit,” she said on the show, adding that people thought: "We’re not gonna take pride in them because they’re too different. They’re too weird."
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She added, “Even some of our family members, I would feel they thought, ‘You're too different.’”
The conversation came about in response to mother Jada Pinkett-Smith’s comments on how she felt mom-shamed for how she has chosen to raise her children over the years.
The Matrix star recalled the first time she experienced being scrutinized based on a decision she made when she permitted her daughter to cut her hair short, causing an outcry from fans who felt the hairstyle was completely inappropriate for a young girl.
“I have had my fair share of mom-shaming,” Jada said. “With Willow, I think the first time I got hardcore criticism, when you first cut your hair, there was a firestorm.”
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The Smith siblings are known for their gender-fluid representation: Willow has shaved her head on numerous occasions, while her brother famously starred in a Louis Vuitton campaign back in January 2016 where he sported a leather skirt while posing next to a handful of female models.
Then, in November 2018, the "Icon" rapper referred to his longtime pal, Tyler The Creator, as his “boyfriend” during a performance at the Camp Flog Gnaw Carnival.
"Tyler the Creator is the best friend in the world and I love him so f**king much,” he shared with the crowd. "And I want to tell you guys something… Tyler doesn't want to say, but Tyler is my f**king boyfriend.”
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Meanwhile, in June 2019, Willow used the Red Table Talk platform to open up about her own sexuality when she told her mom and grandmother Adrienne-Banfield-Norris, "I’m not the kind of person that is constantly looking for new sexual experiences.
“I focus a lot on the emotional connection and I feel like if I were to find two people of different genders that I really connected with and we had a romantic and sexual connection, I don’t feel like I would feel the need to try to go find more.”
Both Jada and her husband Will Smith have been very supportive in always encouraging their children to express themselves, yet some fans still question their parenting skills.