Serena Freewomyn

Queen Latifah Tying the Knot

Filed By Serena Freewomyn | June 14, 2008 9:00 AM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment, Marriage Equality
Tags: California, lesbian, Queen Latifah, rumors, same-sex marriage

After years of rumor and speculation, Queen Latifah is finally out of the closet.

latifah.jpgLast week it was reported that Queen Latifah will be joining other celeb couples by getting hitched in California now that same-sex marriage has been recognized by the state's highest court. The Cleveland Leader reports that:

According to this week's edition of the National Enquirer, Queen Latifah plans to marry her partner of five years, personal trainer Jeannette Jenkins.

Queen Latifah has been very tight-lipped about her relationship with Jenkins, and told Ebony magazine in 2007 that she would not comment on the rumor that Jenkins was her girlfriend. She didn't deny it, she was just annoyed that she was asked.

Neither Queen Latifah nor her partner have ever officially come out. Queen Latifah has, however, given her special friend attention and treatment that suggests they're more than just good friends. Last year she bought Jeannette a Range Rover, and had it delivered to a restaurant to surprise her.

According to the National Enquirer, the couple are "planning an intimate ceremony with close famiy and friends." They are also reportedly interested in adopting an American baby.

First of all, I don't think anyone is surprised about this news. All those motorcycles should have been a dead give away about Queen Latifah's lezzy tendencies. And if that wasn't enough, just look at her film credits: Chicago and Hairspray? Totally family!

Here's wishing Queen Latifah all the best for her upcoming nuptuals!

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Congrats to both of them.
Congrats to all of them.
This is the best Pride month ever!

It's nice to see celeb LGBT African Americans joining the march down the aisle with our out white celeb brothers and sisters. It is a great Pride month. The big day is just around the corner!

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | June 14, 2008 9:43 AM

Got a little motto

Always sees me through

When your good to Mama

Mama's good to you

What color would you like that Range Rover to be

Finally. However, I can't help but notice how opportunist this "coming out" was.

She had the chance to open the dialog on black LGBTs, an issue that's always censored in the nigh-theocratic black community, in the most prominent black magazine, but she cowered out of the chance. Now, through the efforts of those who DID have the courage to openly fight for their rights, she capitalizes on this outcome? It's hard not to be a bit bitter over this.

At least she's better than Jodie Foster, though.

Queen Latifah is getting married and in doing so is coming out in a grand and high profile fashion.

Did she hold back til it was safe to come out?
No, not really. For the world of LGBT's outside of Mass, California and NY, this is still a huge issue fraught with consequences.

Does she benefit from those who made a stand before?
Certainly she does, as do all of us from time to time. I am married in New York and certainly benefitted from the Monroe County decision, though I was by and large unaware of the case much of the time that it was being fought out in the courts.

Does she pay a personal price for this?
Yes, she does. By doing this publically and in the public eye, she links the symbolism of self, an iconic African American woman, with the issues of LGBT's in America, particularly LGBT's of colour. In many minds she ceases to be simply Queen Latifah and becomes Queen Latifah the Lesbian.

Whatever she did or not do in the past on behalf of LGBT's of colour belongs to that past. Her marrying changes the nature of the dialogue about Lesbians amongst racial minorities by highlighting in a very public and media intensive fashion the existence of something that so many community religious leaders try to sweep under the rug and deny....there are Lesbians(and Queers of all sorts) in our midst.

Maura Hennessey
The Lesbians: Changing America One Toaster Oven At A Time.

I say congrats to her and her soon-to-be-wife. As for not coming out publicly prior to this; that is a personal choice. She is not capitalizing on others' work any more than any other couple that will be married in the days, weeks, and months to come.

Just because she is a celebrity does not obligate her to be a torch-bearer for the GLBT community. You cannot thrust that role on anyone's shoulders; it is something that every individual gets the choice to make.

From one queen to another, Congratulations Queen Latifah!

Congrats to Latifah. Also the first openly gay hip hop artist. Hopefully more gay black celebs will come out as the country progresses.

There are major cultural differences between coming out as a white person and when you come out as an African-American or other person of color.

The stakes are much higher, up to and including loss of career and death, as those of us who monitor the Remembering our Dead list know all too well.

The African-American community as a religious based community, is much more socially conservative, and culturally has had a Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy concerning being out as a GLBT person. Lack of out and proud role models exacerbates this problem.

The late Rep. Barbara Jordan, even though is was not a well-kept secret that she had a white partner for decades in H-town, stayed in the closet until her death.

Luther Vandross dodged questions about his sexuality with a 'none of your business' answer to many publications, including iconic EBONY and Jet magazines.

One of the problems that I had when I was struggling with the gender identity issues in the 70's-early 80's is lack of role models that shared my cultural heritage.

So while it's not a surprise for anyone who saw 'Set It Off' that she's coming out, I can well understand why she delayed it as long as she did.

Actually, That Guy, Queen Latifah is far from the first hiphop artist to be out. Check out Deep Dickollective or God-dess, just for starters.

Monica, I'm well aware of the climate; I think I made it obvious in my post. She, however, had the chance to start some major change in the discussion.

True, it is not the obligation of a gay celebrity to come out and contribute to making the world a better place for LGBTs. That is an ongoing debate of morals, but it won't kill anyone to participate.

FULL CIRCLE | June 14, 2008 6:20 PM

YAAAAAY!!!, it's about time..i'm hella happy for them..

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | June 14, 2008 6:20 PM

Lucrece, IMO, as long as someone's NOT hypocritically hurting our community--such as working to pass homophobic legislation or condemning us as moral degenerates--it's entirely up to them when and how they come out. As far as I know QL never publicly trashed us, did she? Sure her celebrity puts her in a unique position to do good for us, but it also means she's a greater target for the haters. I don't feel the least bit judgmental toward her, only joyful that's she's come out and is getting married.

Gerri Ladene | June 14, 2008 6:43 PM

The way I see it, whenever a celebrity or any person of notoriety and living a good life comes out for all the public to know, they are doing a service to the community as a whole! This is what makes people think, all those fans or supporters who were previously ignorant of their idol, and helps to erase the negative image that certain groups (who mostly have associated links to groups like the KKK) try and promote in their twisted way of “GLBt” people. Hmmm, just have to make that “T” bigger!

Oh, speaking of which, I'm starting to recall a little post in Pam's that quoted her stating that she saw marriage as "between a man and a woman". Perhaps I'm misquoting or recalling incorrectly; I'll have to check.


I didn't recall completely accurate. She does support rights for same-sex couples, just not the name of "marriage".

Hmmmmm, why California then, dear? How about you try a state that's got quasi-marriage legislation like you felt were appropriate?

I now feel pity for her. It's clear that she's still dealing with all too common phenomenon of "gay shame".

I think it's important to point out that the newspaper is citing The National Enquirer as the source for this story... It might not be true.

Okay call me an idiot but I am shocked. I guess I never thought to much about whether she was straight or gay. I think I just assumed that she was straight. Good on her though, much happiness Queen.

I've loved Queen Latifah for years, and I am so happy for her! I only had passing thoughts about her maybe being lesbian, mostly because a woman as successful as her is likely to be observed dating men if she is looking in that market.

I've also supported Queen Latifah in her anti-looksist quest to prove that the "larger woman" can also be seen as beautiful. In this regard her role in the movie Bringing Down The House was a real triumph. In addition, any among us who think that she is coming out without risk should remember that she is a spokeswoman for the Cover Girl cosmetics company --- this now makes QL Madison Avenue's most famous "lipstick lesbian" --- this must be a contract that means big bucks for her, and this Big Girl is being courageous indeed! --- I hope the GLBT community nationally will absolutely raise Hell if Cover Girl seeks to end that relationship because of this latest development.

Coming out was the best thing that ever happened to Ellen's career --- let's hope the same for Queen Latifah!

Queen Latifah, we love you! congrats Queen L......I always had that vibe bout ya babe way to go sistah!!!!!

I should've added first major openly gay hip hop artist.