Like many subjects of viral videos, model Samirah Raheem was merely at the right place at the right time.

She wasn’t at the 2017 Slutwalk to protest or join a movement, she was there to be a good friend.

“I was there to support a friend, a dancer who came into a woman's body and was no longer accepted in ballet," Raheem told Blavity. "She was having a hard time finding work and I was having the same moment as a model; not being small enough for small [or] not being big enough for big. I was just trying to support her."

Raheem watched her friend’s performance and was waiting outside of the venue when she noticed some commotion. She said she saw girls talking to ultra-conservative Reverend Jesse Peterson and that the conversations didn’t end well.

“They seemed kind of flustered or broken when they left, and I was like ‘what is this old man telling these girls that they're leaving feeling so frustrated,’ you know? So, when he came up to me, it's never like me to back down from a challenge, I was like ‘okay what you want to talk about?’”

That confidence led to the video that had us cackling and declaring Raheem our new queen. But despite all the glory, her initial reaction was embarrassment. Raheem wasn’t worried about the video at first but when it started to get more attention, she was mortified.

“It was like a trickle and then a levee broke. It was like a flood of attention, it was very weird,” she said.

As affirmations poured in, Raheem said she became proud of her behavior. The attention piqued her curiosity about social justice and inspired her talk to more people, regardless of their ideological position. Raheem self-identifies as “a girl from Compton” and doesn’t consider herself an academic, but if you talk to her for five minutes, it’s clear she has one hell of a mind. Raheem has always supported the movement, in theory, but she maintained a critical lens. She’s interested to see how these movements cater to the black girls in the hood and inner cities. Her feminism isn’t only for people who use SAT words.

“That was always a conversation I was having with a lot of my friends, especially in college,” she said. “I met white girls and international girls who are feminists and I would always tell them ‘I love the work you're doing, but how does it trickle down to girls I grew up with? Or rape culture that surrounds me?’”

Raheem also believes black women are conditioned differently compared to white women and other non-black women and that affects how black women interact with feminism.

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“I think as black women it’s really tricky,” she explained. “Our mamas always want us to be safe and be careful [and] don't say too much, just get on through. It's kind of in the back of our minds to be polite and then when we get home to our families and our girls then we show this side, where we’re like ‘girl this is how I really feel.’ It's like we have two different faces.”

Raheem believes that’s why the video gained so much traction, because she expressed views we’re told to keep to ourselves.

“I talk like you. I grew up in an area like you. And I feel like we have a right to this conversation in our vernacular with our attitudes and our neck rolling. It doesn't have to be political jargon to be considered intellectually valuable,” she declared.

Speaking of language, despite her declaration that “we’re all sluts,” she said that isn’t a word she uses in real life.

“That's why it was so funny to me because I don't really say slut in my day to day. I will never be like ‘yes girl, I'm feeling slutty.’ I would be like ‘I'm on some hoe shit or like ‘I'm feeling myself,’ it’s actually empowering the word. I feel like whatever the word is as long as you know how you're saying it and you know how you're coming you really don't have to explain yourself to anybody,” she said.

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Raheem also admires the way we use and reclaim language.

“There's so many words that we use today they aren't using their original meaning like the word ratchet. It's a garden tool and we have taken it and we have molded it into something totally different. I feel like with conditioning and repetition, any word or stigma can be taken out of it. Now there's going to be a push-back, but it doesn't matter as long as we push forward,” she continued.

Those childhood lessons might have caused Raheem’s initial discomfort, but she is willing to challenge it. Her newfound fame has encouraged her to stand up for herself. She’s done trying to conform for the sake of her career.

“At first I was always trying to please my agents and my clients. ‘Lose weight!’  Okay I'll go lose it. ‘Gain weight!’ Okay I'll go gain it. ‘Wear this!’ Okay I'll go do that…I'm trying to find people who align with this instead of trying to mold me into something else. People identify with this. 16 million people love this so one of those 16 million have to be casting for somebody.  I'm taking that approach,” she said.

Brands aren’t knocking down her door, yet, but she is getting more advocacy opportunities. Raheem confirmed to Blavity that she has heard from Amber Rose and will be involved in this year’s Slut Walk.

“She definitely reached out to me and she was so sweet. I was freaking out, I was like ‘oh my God, this is crazy,’” she said of Rose.

The attention has been a lesson for Raheem and she wants to share it with the rest of the world.

“I will say stand in your own and find people that support you and make a new world for yourself, a safe microcosm that you can express [yourself]," she said. "You just got a tune it out, make it background music and do your thing because you don't know who's going to see you, obviously."

Oh and if you were wondering her age, she's still simply "grown."

"A lady never tells," she added with a laugh. 

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