Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Big Announcement

It's been the topic of much speculation for many, many months. Rumors have been floating, pictures are out there on the Internet. The time has finally come to come clean and address all of it.

Yes, folks . . . . I am heterosexual. For the past 37 years, I have been attracted to and have been involved in several romantic relationships with men. I don't want it to detract from my work here. "I don't want to be looking over my shoulder all the time, thinking I have to hide, being scared of being found out, putting on a front, having a beard, going down the red carpet with some chick who is posing as my girlfriend. That's not cool, that's not being a rock star. I can't do that." So now it's out there, and I hope it doesn't change the way you all view me.

......

Isn't that ridiculous? Isn't it utterly stupid that I have to "come out" as straight here? Isn't it complete nonsense that my sexual preference could be the source of debate or rumor and innuendo?

And yet it has been major news all week that Adam Lambert had to deal with that exact same thing in his quickly-becoming-infamous Rolling Stone interview. His "revelation" that he is gay is, of course, not a shocker. As my sis said, "No straight man rocks shoes the way Adam does!" It's not, though, the anti-climactic nature of Adam's announcement that strikes me as ridiculous. It's the fact that the announcement needed to be made at all -- and that said announcement becomes "news." In the grand scheme of things, does Adam's sexuality matter? He's a talented young man; I don't care who he chooses to have sex with. It's such a double standard, too. Where is Kris Allen's "I'm Straight" magazine interview? Why is Kris's heterosexuality not news? Why is sexuality news period?

The other troubling thing about Adam's RS article is the implication that he had to downplay his sexuality (thus creating this "is he or isn't he?" debate for months) in order to be more successful on Idol. Other gay contestants in the past have reported they were told not to mention their sexuality. The implication is that if America knows you're gay, the calls won't come your way to keep you on the show. And yet straight performers can parade their spouses and kids all over the place to "woo" votes. (I still maintain that Nikki McKibben dragging her kid onstage was the key to her shocking third place finish, knocking Tamyra Grey out of the competition, but that's neither here nor there right now.) This all brings up a question -- is homosexuality "taboo" because we make it so or do we make it so because it's "taboo"? Wouldn't it be great if the number one show in America put someone like Adam Lambert onstage and said, essentially, "Yeah, he's gay, he's fabulous, and he's the next American Idol, er, runner-up"? Wouldn't it be awesome if we started sending the message that sexuality is meaningless? The past decade has seen a "burst" of what I guess you'd call a "gay presence" on television -- Ellen, Will & Grace, Richard Hatch, Project Runway, Ugly Betty, et cetera -- but the time needs to come when they stop being thought of as gay characters/personalities and just characters/personalities. Maybe that's the key to getting rid of the sort of narrow minded thinking that keeps us all from sharing in true equality.

1 comment:

Danielle Mari said...

Next Rolling Stone will be announcing that Keith Richards has experimented with drugs and that Donald Trump wears a toupee.