At the close of a week in which she engaged her Twitter followers in a heated conversation about the practicality of open relationships, R&B singer Jill Scott tweeted this observation:
“Just saw a couple on the plane. Somebody tell me why do straight women marry gay men? Break it down.”
Known for being a skilled and thoughtful songwriter, Scott certainly must have had some idea of the fire she could ignite with her words.
Some of her gay followers were less than thrilled:
From @AzonBey: “WHY WOULD YOU DO US LIKE THIS JILL, I THOUGHT YOU WERE HERE FOR THE GAYS. HOW COULD YOU! :(“
But many fans didn’t take offense:
@JuzCallMeKeke wrote “Womans’ intuition is a God given Gift to us women. Some women marry gay men bc they doubt intuition & are blinded by love,” (Scott thought this was a “good answer.”)
@KING_CORY chimed in with “ALL women needs gay friends. If they had gay friends they wouldn’t be in that kind of predicament.” (Scott agreed.)
Scott retweeted some of her favorites, like @MrTemujinScott’s rationale: “and gay men r there 4 women anytime. 4 some women, they’d rather have that than be lonely..just saying!”
She also liked @SlayLawson’s answer “they’re marrying a companion/great friend, that’s more important to some women than sex” and @ebonydiondra’s two-cents’ worth: “I was taught we are attracted to people that are in the same spiritual condition we are.”
And some fans’ reactions were just, well, stupid:
@CubanButterfly4 suggested “Maybe for the 3somes…Just a thought…Lol!!! :-)”
@KAspergersMom told her “maybe it’s like marrying a girlfriend. You can go shopping, hang out, get your nails done…check out cute guys.”
Scott tried to make her love for gays clear in response, telling KAspergersMom: “I adore my fab gay boyfriends and they love me but…they don’t wanna kiss me in the mouth.”
From Scott’s subsequent tweets back to select fans, we learned a few things, including that there’s a lot of gayness up in Scott’s house of worship:
“I see A LOT of that in church. A LOT.”
In response to one fan’s curiosity about how she can identify sexual orientation so easily, Scott told @Bria_SPEAKS:
“ok…Straight men rarely I ever show all their bottom teeth. My gay homies…do it. Especially when comfortable.”
Seriously? That’s a new one to us. Usually we can tell by even more scientific observations like the length of a man’s beard, or the thickness of his fingernails. (Can you hear our eyes rolling, Ms. Scott?) Obviously that sent some of her already irked fans into even more of a tizzy.
But before we stomp on our recently purchased copies of The Light Of The Sun or burn our tickets to Scott’s Summer Block Party tour, we ask: would the initial question have seemed as homophobic if it had been tweeted by another female celebrity, but one known for her gay advocacy like Kathy Griffin? What about if had been tweeted by a black male instead, someone like Chris Brown, who repeatedly has been called out for using “gay” in a derogatory way in some of his tweets?
It’s certainly a question we’ve all asked ourselves in one form or another—just not to an audience of more than 100,000 Twitter followers.