Carlease Burke just got her big break. According to The Advocate, Burke just landed a role on the upcoming season of the popular Showtime series Shameless. You may recognize Carlease from her picture. She is no newby to Hollywood. She has appeared in countless roles both on the big screen and small screen including Get Shorty, In Her Shoes, Grey's Anatomy and Heroes.
Burke will be joining an amazing cast as she becomes part of the Shameless family. The Showtime series includes veteran actor William H. Macy, Joan Cusack, and Emmy Rossum. Burke who is an out lesbian will be playing Roberta who is described as a foulmouthed and eccentric lesbian. She will be the love interest of Monica Gallagher (the ex-wife of William H. Macy's character on the show).
I love the fact that she is in reality an out African-American lesbian. And I love the fact that she will be portraying a lesbian on a popular TV show. Lord knows we need more representation of positive black same-gender loving people on the screen. But above all this, I love the fact that Burke is an advocate for the LGBT community. According to the Advocate, "Burke is involved with a variety of LGBT organizations, including the Los Angeles–based Women on a Roll and Cornerstone Outreach."
According to Burke, “One would think that of all people, the black community as a whole would be more understanding and supportive of civil rights and the equality of all people. The only way we are going to make huge strides is when we have the support of straight black people and our churches. Our heterosexual friends and family members need to stick up for us and be proud of their LGBT relatives, who include doctors, teachers, coworkers, police officers.” She goes on and says, "Black churches have some obligation to advocate for the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community, especially since it preaches that God is love and created us all in his image."