"Life's too short to let ignorance and hatred win. I choose love," Bassett wrote on social media, referring to a number of rumors surrounding his sexuality

By Tomás Mier
May 11, 2021 03:55 PM
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Joshua Bassett
Credit: Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Joshua Bassett has one thing clear: "Love who you love shamelessly."

On Tuesday, the 20-year-old songwriter and High School Musical: The Musical: The Series actor shared a video of himself singing — along with a powerful statement — on social media addressing recent rumors about his sexuality after he hinted at "coming out" during an interview.

"My entire life people have told me my sexuality. People have shamed me for things they know nothing about. I want to say thank you to those of you who stand for love and acceptance," Bassett wrote. "Toxicity, hatred and negativity say less about the subject but say far more about those who spew it."

"It's 2021. We are the generation of love & growth, it's time we start acting like it," he continued. "Whether you love me, hate me, or damn me to hell, I love you all the same."

He ended his note by writing, "Love who you love shamelessly. It's ok to still be figuring out who you are. Life's too short to let ignorance and hatred win. I choose love. ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜"

The statement was accompanied by a video of him playing a keyboard and singing something he seemingly wrote.

"I'm breaking the spell. I'm mending the cycle," he sings in the clip. "Been going through hell. Need more than survival. If I don't work this out, I'll probably pass it down again. The time for change is now. It's my life. It's my life to live."

On Monday, TikTok and Twitter went into a frenzy after Bassett described Harry Styles as "hot" during an interview and hinted that his mention of his love for the "Watermelon Sugar" star was his "coming out video."

Bassett has been at the center of conversations surrounding a supposed romance with his HSMTMTS costar Olivia Rodrigo. Earlier this year, it was rumored that her song "Drivers License" was about the two's relationship. Bassett is currently dating fellow Disney star Sabrina Carpenter.

In an interview with PEOPLE last week pinned to his newest single "Feel Something," Bassett opened up about finding himself while being in the spotlight.

"I'm changing every day in so many ways — sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse," he told PEOPLE. "I'm just figuring it all out. Sometimes you've got to embrace that other people get to watch that. Sometimes it's embarrassing, but sometimes you just have to own it."

"I just don't subject myself to a lot of the negative talk, because I just don't want to focus on the negativity," he added then. "I'd rather focus on the music and the good stuff, and I think, naturally, that's what will go the distance, and the talk will go away."