Normani opens up about how racist abuse from Camila Cabello fans affected her
6 December 2019, 15:04
In 2016, Normani was forced to quit social media after suffering racist abuse.
Normani is preparing to drop her debut solo album after releasing a string of successful singles, including 'Motivation' and 'Waves'. And now she's The Fader's latest cover star. In her interview with the publication, Normani opened up about her life in girl group Fifth Harmony, going into detail about a terrible incident where she was forced to step back from social media after being racially abused.
In August 2016, Fifth Harmony sat down for a Facebook Live with Galore Magazine. Normani was asked to describe each of her bandmates and when she got to Camila Cabello she paused before answering. "She is...let’s see. Camila. Very quirky, cute," she said.
Some of Camila's fans were left furious by the interview, saying that Normani had gone into detail about other members of the group but struggled when it came to Camila. Soon they began calling her a "monkey" and even superimposed her face over and image of a lynched slave.
Normani announced that she was taking a break from Twitter the next day in a lengthy statement. Meanwhile, other members of Fifth Harmony issued statements of their own expressing their disgust over the abuse Normani had been subjected to. "I stand by the words 'love only', meaning I won't tolerate on my timeline any kind of hate, racism, or discrimination towards ANYONE. Period," Camila tweeted.
Normani has now revealed that, behind closed doors, the group had discussed the incident, but still, as the only black woman in the band, it left her feeling alienated.
"[The girls] offered support, but I'm not sure they could be there in the way that I needed because it's not their experience," she explained. "They don't have to face on a day-to-day basis the things that I have to. I definitely learned after that that I had to walk a different way. I can't look like everybody else."
i stand by the words "love only", meaning I won't tolerate on my timeline any kind of hate, racism, or discrimination towards ANYONE. period— camila (@Camila_Cabello) August 6, 2016
Normani went on to say that whilst in Fifth Harmony she never had the opportunity to showcase the "truest version" of herself. And, as for the state of their friendships now, Normani confirmed that there's absolutely no "bad blood" between her and her former bandmates.
She continued: "We're all on good terms. Conversations have obviously been had. I spoke to [Camila] at Billboard Music Awards. I saw her again at the VMAs, and no bad blood at all."