In an interview with Uptown Magazine, the 45-year-old discussed how difficult it is for black gay women, but stopped short of including herself in that category.
The actress and TV host, who is frequently pictured with her rumoured partner Eboni Nichols, has never personally commented on her own sexuality.
“People’s ideas in general are antiquated when it comes to who you love,” she said. “We haven’t moved as quickly as we probably should. And the reality is that there’s always been gay people in the black community, so it’s not foreign to us. And not just as a black community but just a society as a whole.”
She claimed that being gay was ‘not a character flaw’, adding the opposition to gay marriage angered her.
“Who you choose to marry is really up to you and it’s not something you should be judged on. I don’t find being gay or lesbian to be a character flaw,” she said. “Couples should be protected under the laws of this country, period. It actually angers me. It’s not unusual so let’s be adults and let’s move forward.”
The Uptown article ponders if the role is Latifah’s ‘coming out party’, but decides in the negative when the actress makes a veiled comparison after a question about audiences reactions to her character’s ‘bedroom acrobatics’.
“I’m not really sure how people will feel about Bessie’s bisexuality,” she replied. “It’s not like it’s a secret with her story. She was just free.”