When Camila Cabello quit the X Factor USA created girl group, Fifth Harmony in 2016, it was pretty clear there was no love lost between her and the rest of the group. Now, in a cover story for Rolling Stone, Normani Kordei speaks out about a racist Tumblr account that Camila was active on before she was famous. A fan revealed on Twitter that Camila reblogged racist memes and used the N word.
Normani, who placed 3rd on Dancing with the Stars in 2017, and mentored for Kelly Clarkson on The Voice in 2019, was the only black member of Fifth Harmony, and often felt bullied by Camila’s fans. She has thoughts about Camila’s racism. But in order not to be misconstrued, she wrote out her thoughts in an email to the author of the RS piece:
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. 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.
I face senseless attacks daily, as does the rest of my community. This represents a day in the life for us. 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. 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. 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.
I don’t want to say that this situation leaves me hopeless because I believe that everyone deserves the opportunity for personal growth I really hope that an important lesson was learned in this. I hope there is genuine understanding about why this was absolutely unacceptable. I have spoken what is in my heart and pray this is transparent enough that I never have to speak on it again. To my brown men and women, we are like no other. Our power lies within our culture. We are descendants of an endless line of strong and resilient kings and queens. We have been and will continue to win in all that we do simply because of who we are. We deserve to be celebrated, I deserve to be celebrated and I’m just getting started.
The fan found the Tumblr posts in December. And for her part, Camila apologized right away.
I’m sorry from the bottom of my heart. pic.twitter.com/iZrnUawUAb
— camila (@Camila_Cabello) December 18, 2019