For a while now, Nike has been itching for the first active athlete in the major four sports to come out. The athletic wear brand finally has a gay man to possibly court for a lucrative endorsement. Jason Collins the 7-foot, 12-year NBA veteran sat down with Sports Illustrated to openly discuss his sexuality and why he is now making it public. “I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black and I’m gay,” he proclaims. Not only is he the first NBA player to come out, but the first active athlete on any major sports team. Talk about a #gamechanger.
“I realized I needed to go public when Massachusetts congressman Joe Kennedy, my old roommate at Stanford, told me he had just marched in Boston’s 2012 Gay Pride Parade. I’m seldom jealous of others, but hearing what Joe had done filled me with envy,” Collins explains. “I want to do the right thing and not hide anymore. I want to march for tolerance, acceptance and understanding. I want to take a stand and say, “me, too.”
Most people know Tuc Watkins from playing one half of Desperate Housewives’s token gay couple. For me, the 46-year-old actor will always be David Vickers from One Life To Live. Truth be told, I had a little crush on him back in the day. Little did I know, he played for our team. My gaydar definitely needs a bit of tweaking. That, or it’s really well-tuned and I just ignored the signs. During an interview airing on Monday, April 29, Watkins speaks publicly about being a gay man, as well as becoming a new dad for the first time.
Tuc sits down with Marie Osmond on her Hallmark Channel talk show to promote One Life To Live’s online relaunch. During the interview, he talks about reprising his signature role and about recently welcoming his twins Catchen and Curtis born via surrogate. From an early age, Tuc reveals he always knew he was gay and one day was going to be a dad. Check out a preview of his chat with Marie below.
“I’m black. I’m gay.” YOU GO GIRL. Sashay you stay. During a legislative debate over a measure to repeal Nevada’s gay marriage ban, Senator Kelvin Atkinson made the declaration. The 44-year-old politician urged his fellow senators to change the state constitution to recognize same-sex marriage.
His impassioned plea included talking about his father’s interracial marriage which would’ve been banned last century and overhearing derogatory comments about the bill from people who didn’t know he was gay. His impassioned speech also addressed the concept that legalizing same-sex marriages would threaten straight marriages. “If this hurts your marriage, then your marriage was in trouble in the first place,” he said.
His speech definitely moved people, the Nevada Senate voted 12-9 to begin the process of repealing the ban. That said, Nevada is still a few years away from legalizing gay marriage. The proposal will now head to the state assembly before it can be placed on a ballot in 2016. Check out a portion of Senator Atkinson’s speech below.
It’s not what you think. Rather they’re all coming out as allies for the LGBTI community. GLAAD has enlisted international action film superstar Jackie Chan along with Seinfeld‘s Jason Alexander to take part in their new “Coming Out For Equality” PSA videos. Chan reunites with his Rush Hour director, Brett Ratner, who helms the campaign.
“It’s not enough to talk about those fighting for freedom, for equality, until you are one of those fighting,” Jackie Chan
Clearly Ratner is still doing penance for using the “F-word.” If you recall, he stepped down from producing the Oscars after saying, “rehearsals are for fags.” After publicly apologizing, Brett has made every effort to show he’s not a homophobe. He teamed up with Tom Ford and GLSEN to create PSAs addressing using anti-gay language aimed at teens. Months later GLAAD honored him with their Ally Award.
Others participating in the “Coming Out For Equality” campaign include Kristen Johnston (Third Rock From The Sun), Pauley Perrette (NCIS), Sarah Shahi (The L Word), Tamala Jones (Castle), Jaime King (Hart of Dixie), Deray Davis (Barbershop) and wrestler Hudson Taylor. Speaking of the latter, for his video, he’s featured out of the “closet” since he’s been an LGBTI ally for years. OUT magazine even featured him as one of the hottest straight athlete allies.
Robbie Rogers and EJ Johnson probably have more in common than most people think. Both young men were recently thrust in the spotlight for their sexual orientation and both are associated with professional sports- Rogers played soccer while Johnson is the child of NBA legend Magic Johnson. Robbie announced his retirement from the sport after after coming out in a letter he posted online. EJ, on the other hand, was “outed” by TMZ as he sassily strutted down Sunset Strip in LA. The two gay men sat down for interviews this week to discuss their recent experiences.
First up is EJ. The 20-year-old NYU student sat down (or should I say laid down) to chat with Gwissues‘ Howard Bragman. Johnson talks about the aftermath of being filmed by TMZ. From online haters and support, EJ seems to be taking things in stride. He also discusses how this whole experience felt like he was coming out again- his family and friends have known for a long time. Speaking of family, he shares how he came out to his famous father and mom.
Side note: Just because he’s more flamboyant (and fabulous), I really don’t understand why people are attacking him for being him. He should be applauded for being so comfortable with himself and not afraid to be who he is. We can’t all be straight-acting jocks.
Meanwhile, Rogers made the rounds on a couple high-profile shows this week. First he stopped by ABC’s Nightline and then CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 to give even more insight into his decision to come out, how he wrestled with his secret during his professional career and why he decided to retire at such an early age. Check out clips from both interviews below.
In January, Kwame Harris was outed as a homosexual after being involved with a domestic with an ex-boyfriend. A couple of months later, the former San Francisco 49er is making it official. Harris talked with CNN reporter Coy Wire about his regrets on not being open about his sexuality while he was a pro football player. Coincidentally, both Wire and Harris played ball together during their Standford days.
“Now when I look back in hindsight, if I could’ve done it differently,” Harris said, “I would like to think that I would find the strength or find the fortitude or the grace to, kind of, make the hard decision.” – Kwame Harris
As of yet, there has never been a current professional athlete playing in the big four sports to come out. Harris wants to encourage other athletes to be themselves, but understands how hard it can be in the locker room. Definitely watch the CNN clip below. Not only does it show Kwame’s interview, but it also covers homophobia and LGBT straight allies in professional sports.
A gay mormon named Jimmy Hales decided to document his coming out experience by filming the reactions of the family and friends he tells that he is gay. At first I wasn’t sure what to expect before starting the video, but after watching it, I have to say it’s really cool and the reactions were all very different… but all positive. Here’s what Hales said about what he was going through:
“Studying at BYU as a closet gay Mormon has been quite an experience. I finally decided to come out and stop living a lie. I’m still, and will forever be, a faithful Mormon, so it looks like I’m not going to marry and therefore live a single life through this mortal existence. Sucks.”
His mom’s reaction is one of my favorites. The other one I really liked was one of his male best friends who didn’t believe him at first, but when he did, he gave him a hug to show his support. So touching! Watch the video below – it’s totally worth checking out!
While I love hearing all the juicy tidbits from celeb autobiographies, I’m never tempted to pick one up and read it in its entirety. For Clive Davis’ The Soundtrack of My Life which is out today, I just might have to change that. Not only do I respect the music legend, but I’d love to hear his insights on the superstars he’s made including Janis Joplin, Alicia Keys and Bruce Springsteen to name a few. And the cherry on top, Clive Davis comes out as a bisexual. I never would’ve guessed.
The 80-year-old reveals his first same-sex experience took place during the Studio 54 era in the 70s. It wasn’t until he divorced his second wife in 1985 that he began serious relations with men. Davis shares he was in a monogamous one with a male doctor from 1990 to 2004. Even though he’s currently in an other committed relationship with a man, he considers himself a bisexual. Tomato, tomahto.
In addition to all his personal anecdotes, Clive discusses his professional relationships with the superstars he’s worked with. From concerns he had with Whitney Houston’s lifestyle to his infamous battle with Kelly Clarkson on her third studio album, My December, he dishes it all out. As part of his publicity book tour, he stopped by Katie Couric’s daytime talk show to chat. Check out a couple of clips below from the episode which airs today. I wonder why Usher is there. Hmmmmmm ;)