Queen Latifah has seemingly come out of the closet without talking about it. Queen Latifah was photographed as she embraced her partner and personal trainer Jeanette Jenkins while on board a yacht. Queen Latifah was reportedly on a trip in France to celebrate the marriage of her friend, recording star Alicia Keys.
Rumors have swirled for years about Queen Latifah’s sexuality. For her part, she never really addressed them as she said she basically wanted to live her life in privacy.
Some will wonder if Queen Latifah’s acting and music career, and her endorsement deals, may suffer as a result of effectively coming out of the closet. She currently is a spokesperson for CoverGirl and Curvation ladies underwear.
Generally, endorsement deals are ultimately decided upon by the consumer. If enough people are offended by the behavior of a certain celebrity, whether they be an entertainer or athlete, then the company paying them to sponsor their products will shy away.
Tiger Woods, for example, lost most of his major endorsements earlier this year as the personal scandal he was involved in grew large by the day.
It would seem unlikely, however, that Queen Latifah would lose the support of the public and ultimately her endorsement deals. The country is in a very different place then it was fifteen or twenty years ago. Just last week, for example, coinciding with Queen Latifah being photographed with her lesbian lover on a boat, a California judge repealed Proposition 8, which banned same sex couple marriage, on the basis that it was unconstitutional.
While judicial rulings do not always reflect the will and opinion of the people, it is clear that there is a shift in thinking and attitudes that has become increasingly tolerant and gay friendly with each successive generation.
Queen Latifah’s musical legacy is already set; she will always be remembered as a groundbreaking female rap artist.
Earlier this year, two other major musical acts, Ricky Martin and country star Chely Wright, both came out of the closet. While neither has been as influential an artist as Queen Latifah, both were well known within their respective genres and both of their announcements concerning their sexuality were met with general acceptance.
It will be interesting to see whether or not Queen Latifah will actually speak about her sexuality or if she will allow the pictures of her, in a bathing suit, embracing another woman affectionately on a yacht do the talking for her.
Either way, the public will likely accept Queen Latifah coming out of the closet and focus on her music and personality; neither of which have changed in the wake of these pictures.
Source: Michelle Thorton, “Queen Latifah Comes Out, Romantic Photos”, reelempire.com