B. Scott does not want to subscribe to the typical gay stereotype.
“People just see me and think I’m some crazy gay guy, but I’m pretty smart,” B. Scott said to laughter and cheers at a Silliman College Master’s Tea on Friday. “I am no joke.”
B. Scott, gay YouTube blogger and Internet personality, spoke about self-confidence and overcoming challenges to an audience of over 60 devoted fans. Members of the audience, both Yale students and others who traveled to New Haven to meet him in person, said B. Scott’s message gave them hope and inspiration in facing social pressures.
B. Scott, who is of black, white, Meherrin Indian and Jewish heritage, began by addressing the stereotypes and difficulties of life as a multiracial, gay celebrity. He spoke about his feelings of ostracism growing up in a rural agricultural community in North Carolina with uneducated parents and how he “didn’t wanna be smart as something else to be teased about.”
He eventually worked hard at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics to escape farm life, he said, and finally studied at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he became open about his sexuality during his sophomore year.
Even then, B. Scott was a mini-celebrity, known for his outspoken personality. Fellow students flocked to his room to hear him give advice on good comebacks and speaking out against “mean girls” and school bullies. It was in 2007 when a friend first suggested B. Scott shoot a YouTube video, which launched him into a career as the popular blogger he is today.
Yet despite facing challenges in winning acceptance from those around him — and the challenges he faced with his first lover, who wanted to “control him” — B. Scott said he espouses a positive attitude toward life.
“That’s what I aspire to be — that happiness, that content-ness with myself,” B. Scott said.
“I am a very metaphysical person,” he added. “I believe that the energy I put out into the universe will come back to me.”
B. Scott said he plans to enter television as a talk-show host, comparing himself to Oprah but saying he is “much more hands-on.” But he promised to retain his trademark personality and “tell-it-like-it-is” honesty.
“Now that people are looking at me, I’m not gonna change myself in certain ways,” B. Scott said. “I can only be who I am.”
His message resonated with many members of the audience.
“He’s a wonderful example of what’s possible for a gay black man that we don’t have today,” Donte Donald ’09 said. “His spirit, his energy, his honesty with himself give me the strength to be honest with myself.”
For many other audience members, B. Scott also epitomized self-confidence and self-acceptance.
“I really admire him,” said Erica Nicole, a salsa dancer and video persona from the Bronx who traveled to New Haven to meet the blogger in person. “He’s going to be big. He always relates to people, whether he’s in front of the camera or with people.”
Daniel Friedman ’08 said B. Scott’s “pure and refreshing” air make him a pleasure to watch.
“He’s a paradigm of openness and expression,” he said. “Because some people can’t express themselves clearly, they can live vicariously through him.”
At the end of the tea, several of the fans in the audience approached B. Scott with gifts and posed for pictures, or asked to dance the “Paw Paw,” B. Scott’s signature dance, together.
“You have just met a very real and very beautiful person,” Silliman Master Judith Krauss said at the end of the hour.
And B. Scott certainly did not leave any doubt about his identity.
“Take it or leave it,” B. Scott said. “I am who I am, and I can’t do anything about it.”