“I’ve marched on Washington three times: twice for reproductive freedom and once for gay and lesbian rights, and it was very empowering for me. The political side of this has been important to me for a very long time.”
– Actress Cybill Shepherd, now starring on “The L Word,” to Los Angeles’ Lesbian News, January issue.
“First of all, my brother is gay. So I grew up with a gay brother and nothing surprised me about the issues in the script. I know how it feels to be thought of as ‘different’ as a deaf person, and I also know my brother’s experience. No one should tell us who we should be with or shouldn’t be with. It’s as simple as that. There should be no judgment, no attitude toward the community because we all live the same life. The only difference is who we choose to be with.”
– Actress Marlee Matlin, now starring on “The L Word,” to Los Angeles’ Lesbian News, January issue.
“I now believe that if gay men and lesbians served openly in the United States military, they would not undermine the efficacy of the armed forces. Our military has been stretched thin by our deployments in the Middle East, and we must welcome the service of any American who is willing and able to do the job.”
– Retired Army Gen. John Shalikashvili, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1993 to 1997, writing in The New York Times, Jan. 2.
“Equal treatment of gay couples will be a hallmark of the 21st century, just as racial equality before the law was a sea change in 20th-century America. Someday we’ll look back and wonder what all the fuss was about, the same way we now shake our heads at laws that once banned inter-racial marriage. … The whole threat-to-marriage argument against gay unions never made sense. Stable, monogamous relationships are an important building block of a strong society, and we ought to support them. Why shouldn’t that premise apply to gay couples? How can extending legal protections to them cause harm to anyone else?”
– The San Jose [Calif.] Mercury News in a Jan. 8 editorial.
“Coming out and being gay may actually help some [actors] who don’t have careers. At least it’s something to promote and you have an audience to start with. You can get work at one of the gay networks and have something to bring to the table instead of being another out-of-work actor in Los Angeles or New York.”
– Paul Colichman, creator and CEO of the here! TV pay channel, to the Los Angeles Daily News, Jan. 6.
“[F]or so long, everyone was so worried about it [coming out]. ‘Will it hurt my [Hollywood] career?’ ‘Is that all people are going to talk about?’ ‘Will the audience care?’ The fact of the matter is, we are now at a place where it now doesn’t matter. You can come out, acknowledge your sexuality and move on.”
– Actor Chad Allen (“Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman,” “End of the Spear”) to the Los Angeles Daily News, Jan. 6.
“I don’t even want Kevin Spacey to come out anymore. He’s not really a noteworthy celebrity anymore. So he really missed the boat. And as much as Jodie Foster has never come out and said, ‘Hey, I am straight,’ she has never come out and expressed her private issues. I would just love for her to take a stand. That would make a huge difference in the world.”
– Village Voice columnist Michael Musto to PlanetOut.com, Jan. 6.
“I’m 53 years old. I grew up in a small town in the rural South. I was raised in the Southern Baptist church. And so I have a belief system that arises from that. It’s part of who I am. I can’t make it disappear. … Do I believe they [gays] should have the right to marry? I’m just not there yet — me, I’m not there yet.”
– Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards to ABC News, Dec. 31.
“I guess I come from a more eclectic background [than my husband] and so it’s [same-sex marriage] less problematic, I think, probably for me. But I think both sides of this argument understand the desire for equality and equal treatment. I don’t think there is anybody who is for or against it who doesn’t understand it and I don’t think there’s anybody who is for or against it who doesn’t understand the trouble people have. … [I]t just seems something that they’ve not been around. Of course, they haven’t because we haven’t had it in this country.”
– Elizabeth Edwards, wife of Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards, to ABC News, Dec. 31.