Gabrielle Union spoke out about the importance of her “entire household” showing up to support Dwyane Wade’s 11-year-old son, Zion, at the Miami Beach Pride Festival on April 7.
“It feels normal,” the actress told Us Weekly while attending the Black Design Collective Honors Costume Designer Ruth E. Carter event on Saturday. Pride celebrations were not new to Union, who attended her first LGBTQ event at a younger age than Zion is now.
Many critics called out the Wade family for allowing the 11-year-old to promote his sexual orientation as such a young age.
“My mom took me to my first pride at eight years old,” Union revealed, seemingly addressing the backlash. “We moved to San Francisco, and it’s kind of part of being a global citizen.”
Due to that representation, the Being Mary Jane star had no hesitation when it came to supporting her stepson on his path to discovering his identity.
“People talk a lot about diversity and inclusion, but they don’t actually mean it,” Union, 46, added. “In our household, we mean that, and that’s why the entire household went to pride.”
The actress/author/entrepreneur brought her oldest stepson Zaire, 17, and her 5-month-old infant daughter, Kaavia, to the festivities.
According to the celebrity and entertainment outlet, the Wade family attended a drag performance after leaving the parade.
Although Union’s NBA superstar husband could not make the event, he showed support for Zion by uploading images of his family at the festival to his Instagram Story.
“Zion had his cheering section today,” Dwyane wrote under a photo of his relatives. “Wish I was there to see you smile kid! … It’s a family thing.”
Although there are concerns about the open support, people from the LGBTQ community showed appreciation for the Wade family’s backing of Zion because of the high rates of homelessness among Black LGBTQ youth.
“The factors that led young LGBTQ people to experience homelessness stem from more than ‘coming out,’ reports the University of Chicago News. “Their families faced broader issues of instability, including poverty, violence, addiction or mental health problems that contributed to their risk for homelessness and adversity.”
What's Your Reaction?
Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.