By all accounts, Rihanna has gone from singing about her umbrella to being one of the most recognizable names in music and fashion. But despite all of this, in a recent interview with the New York Times' T magazine, the singer still says she faces racism in the corporate world.
"You know, when I started to experience the difference—or even have my race be highlighted—it was mostly when I would do business deals," Rihanna stated.
Rihanna said she's clearly made aware of her race when it comes to brokering deals and how people expect her to act. But instead of dwelling on the racism she's encountered, she says it's made her stronger.
"And, you know, that never ends, by the way. It's still a thing. And it's the thing that makes me want to prove people wrong. It almost excites me; I know what they're expecting, and I can't wait to show them that I'm here to exceed those expectations."
And that racism was evident last month when reports surfaced that an executive from Flynn Family Office, Rihanna's current financial-management firm, said the singer is hot and successful because she's not too dark.
"I have to bear in mind that those people are judging you because you're packaged a certain way—they've been programmed to think a black man in a hoodie means grab your purse a little tighter," she said. "For me, it comes down to smaller issues, scenarios in which people can assume something of me without knowing me, just by my packaging."
It doesn't even matter how many records you sell—racism is something you just can't escape. But I'm still not one to forget that she called Rachel Dolezal a hero.