Raven-Symoné wants to clear the air about some of her recent controversial comments. The actress made headlines last week for appearing to defend Univision host Rodner Figueroa for comparing Michelle Obama to a cast member from Planet of the Apes. “Don’t fire me from this right now — but some people do look like animals,” she said on The View before comparing herself to Toucan Sam.
On Friday, Raven sat down with E! News’ Alicia Quarles to explain her views, and also comment on causing a stir last year when she told Oprah Winfrey, "I am not African-American."
Addressing criticism that she sided with Figueroa last week, she says, “I don’t think I was defending. I think he got fired for a reason. It was very distasteful what he said, it was very distasteful. And I don’t believe she looks like one at all. I don’t believe she should’ve been casted, but I do know that a lot of people I know have animal traits." Raven then lovingly said Quarles looks like a deer and added, "I think Michelle Obama looks like a little cat.”
She also said, “I think any time something is dealing with race, that is still an open wound and you try to look at it from a different standpoint, people are gonna get mad. Especially when it’s socially out, blasted and people don’t read the whole story. Just like a lot of my comments. People don’t read into the whole story and start making things and they say, I said this and I said this and I’m trying to be a different race, but I’m not trying to be.”
Raven then clarified that, in her now-infamous Oprah interview, “I never said I wasn’t Black. I said I wasn’t African-American and to me, that’s a difference." Looks like Raven has been doing some homework into her precise lineage. She also added, "Thank you to Ancestry.com, actually for sending me my DNA test! I am from every continent in Africa, except for one and I’m from every continent from Europe except for one." Just a friendly correction, Africa is only one continent with 54 individual countries. In addition, Europe is only one continent.
Watch Raven-Symoné's full interview, including her thoughts on Empire's n-word debate, below.
(Photo: Tommaso Boddi/WireImage)