Keke Palmer Opened Up About How "Difficult" It Is To Hear Commentary On Her Career After A Viral Tweet Comparing Her To Zendaya

·2 min read

A little more than a week ago, Keke Palmer was minding her own blessed business when she found herself in the middle of a Twitter debate about her career.

Keke smiling on the red carpet
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Some social media users were comparing her to fellow actor and Disney star, Zendaya, wondering if Keke would have greater mainstream success if she didn't have darker skin.

close up of Zendaya
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“This may be one of the clearest examples of how colorism plays out in Hollywood," one tweet read in part. "They were both child-stars, but their mainstream popularity is very different.”

Keke and Zendaya at an event
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Keke weighed in on the debate as the tweet went viral, letting people know that she's an "incomparable talent." "A great example of colorism is to believe I can be compared to anyone," she wrote on Twitter.

And now, she's opening up even more about the situation. Keke told The Guardian that in general, she's "always" dealt with people asking her about race and colorism, which can sometimes be "difficult" to handle.

Keke on the red carpet
Amy Sussman / Getty Images,

“It’s difficult. I’m asked about it a lot, you know?" she shared. "Before that little tweet even came out. People would always ask me: ‘How do you deal with colorism? How do you deal with being Black in this industry?’"

close up of Keke
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"And the answer I’m gonna give you may not be the answer that you want. Because the truth is, I ignore it. I ignore it," Keke added.

close up of Keke walking outside
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She wasn't negating that racism exists, but said she “just hate[s] when the narrative goes to a place where I think young girls might look and say: ‘I’m a victim.' When yes, racism is real. Colorism is real."

close up of Zendaya
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But when it comes to the comparisons between her and Zendaya, she thinks that was a little too much. “You believe I’m not doing enough, not because I’m not but because you don’t believe that I can be enough. And that is colorism," Keke continued.

zendaya and keke at an event
Todd Williamson

“You should actually use me as an example of what I was able to accomplish despite what I was up against," she added. "Don’t change the story of somebody who has given hope to make them hopeless. The real conversation around colorism and Keke Palmer should be that she defied the odds.”

close up of Keke
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Bottom line! You can read what she had to say in full here.