LGBT History, Coming out

BTL Staff
By | 2010-02-10T09:00:00-05:00 February 10th, 2010|Opinions|

Compiled by Howard Israel

S/he Said

“America is gushing Sunday over former President Ronald Reagan in recognition of what would have been his 100th birthday. Most historians and political pundits will look at the ripple effect Reagan’s two terms in office continues to have on American politics. But for many LGBTs, myself included, I cannot hear the man’s name without thinking of so many other names now effectively wiped from the collective memory. So many names – and with each name, memories of joy and rage and a kind of spirituality in confronting death with dignity – in spite of the government’s disgusting deliberate neglect.”
– Karen Ocamb, in her column titled “Ronald Reagan’s Real Legacy: Death, Heartache and Silence Over AIDS,” http://www.lgbtpov.com, Feb.06.

“My mother said, ‘I think you should go ahead and do that story you’ve been talking about. Just go ahead and do it.’ She was talking about the story in which I would say that I am gay. My mother and I had already had the gay talk, during which she had told me that nothing had changed, that she loved me, asked if I was seeing anybody, and so on. What she didn’t like was the idea of me coming out publicly; she was of the opinion that it was really nobody’s business, and she worried that prejudice might disrupt my career. But like an NFL referee, she had overturned the original call. ‘Do it,’ she said.”
– Steve Buckley, longtime Boston Herald sports columnist and a regular on Boston’s sports talk radio station, in his coming out column titled “Welcome to my coming-out party,” http://www.wglb-tv.blogspot.com, Jan. 06.

“Some of the pix here feature gay boys with feminine traits, and some gay girls with masculine traits. And even more gay kids with NONE of those traits. Just like real life, these gay kids come in all shades and layers of masculine and feminine. This project is not about furthering stereotypes. It is, simply: ‘This is me and this is my story’ – in living color and black & white. They just are – who they are! It’s their nature and their truth.”
– Paul V. in his recently launched “Born This Way Blog,” showing snapshots of individual LGBT people as a kids with a personal essay about what he or she sees when looking at the photo, http://www.borngaybornthisway.blogspot.com, Jan. 09.

“I love the fact that I can be totally out in poker and not worry about any repercussions. Because poker is a game of individual merit, there are very few people that can get in my way out of bias or bigotry. At the end of the day, the cards speak. I think it’s important that there are openly gay role models for people and I feel lucky that I get to be the subject of media coverage and be a good example for lots of people who may be struggling with their sexuality.”
– Vanessa Selbst, international poker champion and Yale Law School student, http://www.echelonmagazine.com, Feb/Mar 2011 issue.

“With the repeal of the military’s ban on openly gay service members, with time we should see more ambitious, well-qualified and capable gay Americans achieving distinction at our service academies, in command positions, and in later life careers. Many of these leaders will no longer feel the need to mask their identities, decline promotions or avoid visible positions because of whom they choose to love and with whom they live.”
– Bob Witeck, in his column titled “What Repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Means to All of Us – Seismic Ripples In America’s Economy and Workforce,” http://www.echelonmagazine.com, Feb/Mar 2011 issue.

About the Author:

BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 25th anniversary.