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Gay Public Figures  
User currently offlineTsaord From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2326 times:

If your favorite public figure came out would you care?

A person who is famous or well known must share everything about his/her life? Right?

OK I was reading something on Anderson Cooper and this "Julian Cesar Recio" Fellow he was dating, or so says the blogs. The blogs were littered with Anderson being labeled a coward and they "why doesn't he just say it" mantra.

We put so much emphasis on labeling people this or that in public life. I'm sure there are Bballers, Football players, and politicians who are homosexual but it's not fear that keeps them from coming out, its just not anyone's business. Straight people don't have to come out. Also people will attach the "openly gay ~insert name here~" tag to people.

I just got a little heated after reading somethings people think public figures should do. Would it mean something or change your life if someone came out who was gay that people had no clue about?

27 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 10130 posts, RR: 26
Reply 1, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2273 times:
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Quoting Tsaord (Thread starter):
If your favorite public figure came out would you care?

No.

Quoting Tsaord (Thread starter):
A person who is famous or well known must share everything about his/her life? Right?

No.

I was sorta surprised a few months ago, when Jodie Foster finally publicly thanked her partner. People said things like, "it's about time!"

Frankly, as long as she's thanking her partner in private, I don't see any need for her to do it publicly. After all, I don't particularly care who her partner is, nor do I care if she feels she gets adequate support from her.

People always like to gossip about who's gay or straight. While it's somewhat interesting from a strictly observational standpoint, it doesn't change my opinion of them, long as they're in turn letting others be who they are. Leave them be, let them be whoever they want to be in the public eye.



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineLH423 From Canada, joined Jul 1999, 6501 posts, RR: 54
Reply 2, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 2157 times:

I guess for me, there's a difference between not actively acknowledging it and actively hiding it.

I agree, I don't think a huge deal needs to be made about coming out (i.e. cover stories in People Magazine) but I guess it kind of annoys me when people who are gay are never seen in public with their partner (if they have one) or never make any references whatsoever to their orientation. There is a distinction to be made between being private and hiding in the closet making sure no one finds out about your "dirty little secret".

Also, there needs to be a distinction between people of public stature who are out in their private lives to their friends and family but not to the general public and people who are still completely in the closet. I recognize that coming out is a very tough, personal choice. If someone, regardless of fame or fortune, has not arrived at the point where they're comfortable telling another person then that's for that person to decide where, when, and how he/she wants to do it. However, if someone is comfortable enough to be out to their friends and family then they're hiding it. Because, that essentially says, "I'm comfortable with myself to let my friends and family know and who, if I were just another ordinary person, would be out to the world, but since I'm in the public eye and my career partially hinges on this detail, I'm not going to risk it."

Of course, I also believe that many would like to come out if they could. However, the common perception (especially in the sports world) is that if a star is gay he/she will lose their endorsements. And let's face it, while sports salaries are already quite handsome, a good chunk of their annual income (especially in lesser paid sports like tennis or golf) comes from endorsement deals. Or actors who fear that the public will abandon them if they come out since, let's face it, many will no longer find it believable when their favourite leading man steals a passionate, on-screen kiss because they know he's a poof. So, really, until there's a change in the mentality of the general public, I don't see things changing drastically either.

I guess the question I'd want to ask public figures who are so "private" about their personal life is this: "If you're invited to the [insert awards ceremony or public event of your choice] would you go alone regardless of your sexuality?"

Oh, as for Anderson Cooper. Yeah, he does just need to get it done with. Hell, I know someone (male) who's slept with him. So yeah, c'mon Andy...you're not fooling anyone  Wink

LH423



« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
User currently offlineSeb146 From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 11731 posts, RR: 15
Reply 3, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 2144 times:



Quoting LH423 (Reply 2):
I know someone (male) who's slept with him.

That lucky SOB....

Anyhoo... I have never understood why announcing sexual orientation is a big deal when the person is gay, but when the person is straight, there is no big announcement or cover story in the tabloids. For the guys, I think it hurts rather than helps their career. Take Lance Bass. Not my favorite *NSYNC boy. The five guys were not that keen on reuniting. Since he "came out" it seems even less likely. For those guys that were out in the first place, like Nathan Lane and Harvey Firestien, they have a small but faithful following but are pretty much ignored.

I don't see what consenting adults do behind closed doors has to do with how the person sings or acts. I don't even see why these people that sing or act or simply pose in front of the camera make headline news. Portland has an openly gay mayor. A few years ago, he broke up with his partner. One weekly local tabloid ran a short article on it. Other than that, the only time his oreintation is ever mentioned is if he attends any type of gay-supported fund raiser like Esthers Pantry or AIDS Walk. A small town near Salem has a trans mayor (he dresses as a she). There was one story on it on each of the TV stations (4 total) when s/he was elected and again when 4 members of Westboro Baptist Church "visited" there. Funny story: Everyone in Silverton turned out to "welcome" the church members. Things like: Thanks for visiting, welcome to Silverton, we support our mayor and so on. One editorial summed it up nicely: Love trumps hate.



Life in the wall is a drag.
User currently offlineDougloid From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 2124 times:

Who cares? I think that's up to the individual. Whether they're in public life or not, they're the one who's got to live it, right?

However, one thing that really offends me is the tendency of some of the radical elements in the gay world to 'out' people who choose not to make a public display of their orientation..

That's exploiting the stigma that ignoramuses place on the issue of gayness for some purpose, the reason for which escapes me. Can anyone explain that to me?.


User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 10130 posts, RR: 26
Reply 5, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 2058 times:
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Quoting LH423 (Reply 2):
Also, there needs to be a distinction between people of public stature who are out in their private lives to their friends and family but not to the general public and people who are still completely in the closet.

No, there doesn't. It's none of our business.

Quoting LH423 (Reply 2):
never make any references whatsoever to their orientation.

I wish everyone followed that path. Then we wouldn't have to hear about it from anyone, gay or straight.

Quoting LH423 (Reply 2):
However, if someone is comfortable enough to be out to their friends and family then they're hiding it.

Not necessarily true. Maybe they just don't feel the need to broadcast it to the world. And that's their right.



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineLTU932 From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 13864 posts, RR: 50
Reply 6, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 17 hours ago) and read 1998 times:

The mayor of my home town of Hamburg Ole von Beust is gay, and nobody complains about it. Hell, nobody even makes a big deal out of the fact that our mayor is gay, because we care about the politics he makes, not what he does in his bed.

Also, the mayor of Berlin Klaus Wowereit is also gay. Same thing as with von Beust in Hamburg, people only care about politics than his sexual preference.


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 7, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 1968 times:



Quoting LTU932 (Reply 6):
The mayor of my home town of Hamburg Ole von Beust is gay, and nobody complains about it. Hell, nobody even makes a big deal out of the fact that our mayor is gay, because we care about the politics he makes, not what he does in his bed.

Also, the mayor of Berlin Klaus Wowereit is also gay. Same thing as with von Beust in Hamburg, people only care about politics than his sexual preference.

Besides: von Beust represents the conservative Christian Democrats, Wowereit the center-left Social Democrats. The chairman of the (market) liberal party is also openly gay. I think we've got the spectrum covered relatively well at or near the top...

While it is still not entirely immaterial on our political scene, it's not a really big deal either. At least not any more.


User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 20007 posts, RR: 59
Reply 8, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 1913 times:



Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 1):

Frankly, as long as she's thanking her partner in private, I don't see any need for her to do it publicly. After all, I don't particularly care who her partner is, nor do I care if she feels she gets adequate support from her.

Except it's perfectly acceptable to wear a wedding ring, right?

Well, as long as gay marriage isn't allowed, if I see someone wearing a wedding ring, my assumption is that they are heterosexual and announcing to the world that they have a heterosexual life partner.

So they aren't keeping it to themselves, are they?

Quoting LTU932 (Reply 6):
The mayor of my home town of Hamburg Ole von Beust is gay, and nobody complains about it. Hell, nobody even makes a big deal out of the fact that our mayor is gay, because we care about the politics he makes, not what he does in his bed.

And this is why Europeans are immeasurably superior to Americans.


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 9, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 12 hours ago) and read 1898 times:



Quoting DocLightning (Reply 8):
And this is why Europeans are immeasurably superior to Americans.

No, we're not, really. There are many cool things about the USA as well. But still thank you for the compliment! Big grin

It's not to be ignored that the civil rights movements in Europe got essential impulses from across the Atlantic. I wouldn't mind if we could return the favour now, of course.


User currently offlineWunalaYann From Australia, joined Mar 2005, 2839 posts, RR: 25
Reply 10, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 11 hours ago) and read 1881 times:



Quoting Klaus (Reply 9):
No, we're not, really. There are many cool things about the USA as well. But still thank you for the compliment!

My words exactly.

As for the whole public coming out/trash magazine thing, just like anything remotely "celebrity", I just want to yell "could you people get a life and stop gossiping about someone else's".  Smile


User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 10130 posts, RR: 26
Reply 11, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 11 hours ago) and read 1856 times:
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Quoting DocLightning (Reply 8):
Except it's perfectly acceptable to wear a wedding ring, right?

Well, as long as gay marriage isn't allowed, if I see someone wearing a wedding ring, my assumption is that they are heterosexual and announcing to the world that they have a heterosexual life partner.

So they aren't keeping it to themselves, are they?

What exactly are you arguing against? I have no idea what that had to do with anything I said.



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineCharles79 From Puerto Rico, joined Mar 2007, 1331 posts, RR: 6
Reply 12, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 11 hours ago) and read 1850 times:

The only time it really bothers me is when a gay person hides behind a public anti-gay agenda, only to be found out after they do something ethically or criminally wrong (like oh so many politicians). But I guess that level of hipocricy will enrage anyone, whether straight or gay (like straight reverends who cheat on their wives while preaching the sanctity of marriage). Other than that, private life should be just that, private.

On a different thought, sometimes I think that these celebrities "come out" at the right time when they need to push the sales of a new book or need to get back on the limelight...

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 8):
And this is why Europeans are immeasurably superior to Americans.

Oh common Doc no need to generalize like that. You might say that the EU currently has better legal protections when it comes to gay rights but other than that there are equally brilliant and accommodating people on both sides of the pond. Similarly, there are homophobes on both sides of the pond as well...besides, many parts of the US are at their level of acceptance already, give it another 10 years and we'll be on equal footing.


User currently offlineArmitageShanks From UK - England, joined Dec 2003, 3631 posts, RR: 15
Reply 13, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 10 hours ago) and read 1836 times:

I wouldn't change my political opinion of him or her unless that was their agenda. If they carried on doing what they always did, cool. If they changed into someone that used their publicity to get things done, then I would worry a bit.

User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 20007 posts, RR: 59
Reply 14, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 1754 times:



Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 11):

What exactly are you arguing against? I have no idea what that had to do with anything I said.

People talk about how gays should keep their personal lives to themselves. My argument is that I'm quite happy to do that if people will stop wearing wedding rings and being openly heterosexual.

But since that's neither reasonable nor fair, I am arguing that we should keep our personal lives to ourselves exactly as much as everyone else does.

Quoting Charles79 (Reply 12):

Oh common Doc no need to generalize like that.

The reason the EU has better politics than the U.S. is because Europeans care about what their politicians do in their professional lives and don't expect them to all be saints like we do.


User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 10130 posts, RR: 26
Reply 15, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 6 hours ago) and read 1752 times:
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Quoting DocLightning (Reply 14):
People talk about how gays should keep their personal lives to themselves. My argument is that I'm quite happy to do that if people will stop wearing wedding rings and being openly heterosexual.

But since that's neither reasonable nor fair, I am arguing that we should keep our personal lives to ourselves exactly as much as everyone else does.

That's all well and good, but I didn't say anything contrary to what you did.

Since the thread was about gay public figures, I was commenting on gay public figures. Doesn't mean that what I said doesn't apply to straight public figures, as well. I, personally, don't really see a need for ANYONE to publicize his or her private life.



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineLH423 From Canada, joined Jul 1999, 6501 posts, RR: 54
Reply 16, posted (5 years 11 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 1646 times:



Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 5):
Maybe they just don't feel the need to broadcast it to the world

I'm not saying "broadcast" it. Like I said, I think it's ridiculous that People magazine feels the need to run a cover story every time some heartthrob celebrity comes out in some big spectacle.

What I'm saying is when people go to lengths to HIDE their sexuality from the public, yeah, I'm gonna judge. I mean, if being seen in public with your partner is "broadcasting" your sexuality, then that means every time Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie appear in public they're "broadcasting". I don't think most people take that view. But, if you're a person in the public eye and you're gay and you have a partner that you refuse to be seen in public with then I start to wonder why. What is that person so afraid and/or ashamed of?

Of course, I fully agree that it is the choice of the individual. Doesn't mean I agree with that decision.

LH423



« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
User currently offlineJamincan From Canada, joined Aug 2006, 776 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (5 years 11 months 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 1583 times:



Quoting LH423 (Reply 16):
What I'm saying is when people go to lengths to HIDE their sexuality from the public, yeah, I'm gonna judge. I mean, if being seen in public with your partner is "broadcasting" your sexuality, then that means every time Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie appear in public they're "broadcasting". I don't think most people take that view. But, if you're a person in the public eye and you're gay and you have a partner that you refuse to be seen in public with then I start to wonder why. What is that person so afraid and/or ashamed of?

I think there is a general notion in Hollywood that celebrities will lose their appeal if the public knows they are gay, for various reasons. Unfortunately, this notion doesn't receive much scrutiny. Look at someone like Neil Patrick Harris for example, who came out and has still maintained a successful career starring in a successful TV show (as a very straight character for that matter) and is comfortable bringing his boyfriend onto the red carpet with him. It's hardly been a hinderance for him and I don't see why other's don't follow his example.


User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 10130 posts, RR: 26
Reply 18, posted (5 years 11 months 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 1573 times:
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Quoting LH423 (Reply 16):
What I'm saying is when people go to lengths to HIDE their sexuality from the public, yeah, I'm gonna judge. I mean, if being seen in public with your partner is "broadcasting" your sexuality, then that means every time Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie appear in public they're "broadcasting". I don't think most people take that view. But, if you're a person in the public eye and you're gay and you have a partner that you refuse to be seen in public with then I start to wonder why. What is that person so afraid and/or ashamed of?

OK, fair enough. I will agree to disagree with that, though - I really don't care if you hide your sexuality, because I don't know why you do it, and therefore, I'm not in a position to judge.

It really is no one else's business, and it's not necessarily shame - could just be that they like their privacy.

At the end of the day though, it doesn't bother me much one way or another.



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineSeb146 From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 11731 posts, RR: 15
Reply 19, posted (5 years 11 months 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 1543 times:



Quoting Jamincan (Reply 17):
I think there is a general notion in Hollywood that celebrities will lose their appeal if the public knows they are gay

I read a quote one time after some straight guy won an award for playing a gay guy. Some gay activist said something about "What about all those gays that have to play straight all the time?" I wish I had that exact quote. It was priceless!



Life in the wall is a drag.
User currently offlineKmh1956 From Bermuda, joined Jun 2005, 3324 posts, RR: 7
Reply 20, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 1426 times:



Quoting Tsaord (Thread starter):
If your favorite public figure came out would you care?

No. A person's sexuality does not make me respect them any more or any less.

Quoting Tsaord (Thread starter):

A person who is famous or well known must share everything about his/her life? Right?

I don't care how much a person is in the public eye. One's private life should remain exactly that..private.

The only time that I was particularly bothered by the whole gay/straight issue was many years ago when I was seriously lusting after (and chatting up) a gorgeous ski instructor in New Hampshire. I was crushed later to find out I was completely wasting my time...he was gay.



'Somebody tell me why I'm on my own if there's a soulmate for everyone' :Natasha Bedingfield
User currently offlineSeb146 From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 11731 posts, RR: 15
Reply 21, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 1383 times:



Quoting Kmh1956 (Reply 20):
A person's sexuality does not make me respect them any more or any less.

Not if they lie or hide it. Take Clay Aiken vs. Lance Bass or Neil Patrick Harris. There were questions about Lance's sexuality because he was the "pretty" one in a boy band, but nothing pressing like Clay Aiken. When Lance and Neil came out, it was a big deal for about 2 minutes. But, with Clay, roumers went on forever. That was all anyone seemed interested in. When he finally did come out, my biggest question was: why did you lie about it for so long?



Life in the wall is a drag.
User currently offlineKmh1956 From Bermuda, joined Jun 2005, 3324 posts, RR: 7
Reply 22, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 1375 times:



Quoting Seb146 (Reply 21):
When he finally did come out, my biggest question was: why did you lie about it for so long?

If I had to guess, it's probably because of the narrow-mindedness of people who quite literally hate gay people and still look upon it as a life choice as opposed to being the way someone was born. I don't blame some folks for not coming out...besides, it's none of my business if someone's gay or straight... or if they choose to come out or not. Their sexuality doesn't make them any less of a performer, politician or friend.



'Somebody tell me why I'm on my own if there's a soulmate for everyone' :Natasha Bedingfield
User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 10130 posts, RR: 26
Reply 23, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1331 times:
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Quoting Kmh1956 (Reply 22):
I don't blame some folks for not coming out...besides, it's none of my business if someone's gay or straight... or if they choose to come out or not. Their sexuality doesn't make them any less of a performer, politician or friend.

Exactly.

Well, to be fair, I would be rather annoyed if a friend of mine had lied to me for years - although I'd probably understand it after awhile.

But aside from that, if you want to lie to the general public about your personal life - out of fear or just to mess with them - go for it, long as you're not hurting anyone else.

Not being familiar with the story, did Clay Aiken actually lie about it? Or did he just refuse to confirm one way or another?



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 20007 posts, RR: 59
Reply 24, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 1288 times:



Quoting Vikkyvik (Reply 23):

Well, to be fair, I would be rather annoyed if a friend of mine had lied to me for years - although I'd probably understand it after awhile.

That's the hardest part about coming out, Vikkyvik. The feeling that I'd hurt everyone by lying to them all those years.

That's one thing that kept me in the closet; the shame that I knew I'd lied.

I look forward to a world in which no kid feels a need to lie about it.


25 Seb146 : In reading these responses and thinking about my own life, this is very interesting. For my personal experience, I felt as though coming out would ba
26 Jamincan : He has denied it in the past.
27 Canuckpaxguy : Let's not forget that anti-gay zealots were going to picket Heath Ledger's funeral just for portraying a gay man in Brokeback Mountain. It's just not
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