50 coming out stories of 2012

2012: 50 Gays Who Came Out This Year

It seems that 2012 was a big year for gays coming out, at least for the following 50 people. Some didn’t surprise me too much. I’d either already figured or heard through the proverbial grapevine. Others did make me stop and think.

As a rule, I’m not fond of this huge pressure we tend to put on gay people to come out. I think that’s a personal thing, and no one should be forced or intimidated to come out. Privacy is also a huge concern nowadays with social media, even if you’re not a celeb. I never actually had the big “coming out” speech. I always knew who I was, I never lied about who I was, and I minded my own business.

“The fact is, I’m gay.” Anderson Cooper’s long-awaited announcement sums what it meant to come out in 2012. Again and again we heard the same sentiment — from pop singer Mika’s equally anticipated confirmation, “If you ask me am I gay, I say yeah,” to actor Andrew Rannells casually remarking about relating to a gay character, “I am gay in real life, so I definitely get it.” — proving that coming out today is in many cases a non-event, and certainly secondary to other achievements.

This one didn’t surprise me. In the same respect it never mattered to me one way or the other what his sexual preference was. It still doesn’t; I think he’s the best at what he does. And it’s nice to see that this is actually a “non-event” in many cases.

Although sometimes it is surprising when you had no idea someone was gay. I didn’t know this until I read the article.

Sherman Hemsley, the actor famous for his role as George Jefferson on All in the Family and The Jeffersons, never came out in life.

Hemsley didn’t actually come out, so this article is a little misleading. If you want to get technical, he was “outed” posthumously against his wishes. All I know is I feel a little guilty. I never thought of him as a good actor. In light of this information I now have a new level of respect for his acting abilities and what he did with his life…cuz it can’t be easy playing straight. It couldn’t have been easy keeping his sexuality a secret either. I can’t even imagine.

This one just leaves me speechless and makes me wonder how dumb they think we are.

“I am gay in real life, so I definitely get it,” actor Andrew Rannells said about his newly out character Elisha on HBO’s Girls.

It was the first time Rannells, who was nominated for a Tony for his Broadway turn in The Book of Mormon and also plays gay on NBC’s The New Normal.

It doesn’t always work this way. And I’m glad it doesn’t. But in this case was there ever any doubt?

Now this one below surprised me as much as George Jefferson. I’m actually a fan of Honey-boo-boo, and I wouldn’t have guessed Uncle Poodle was gay if I’d seen him on the street. At least not until we made eye contact anyway. The eyes are always the dead give-away for me. As a side note, I would never be attracted to Andrew Rannells if I met him on the street or in a club. I’m sure he’s a great guy, but not my type by any means. But if I met Uncle Poodle I’d be so attracted I might be rendered speechless, which doesn’t happen often.

 Alana’s Uncle Lee, affectionately called “Uncle Poodle,” became a breakout star after appearing, open, out and proud, alongside his supportive family. And like Rosie Pierri, Thompson keeps his sexual philosophy real: “I’m gay, but I’m as redneck as I can get. If you want people to accept you, you have to show you don’t have a problem with yourself and just be up front about who you are. If you do, you earn people’s respect.”

For those who don’t know, I have another blog on Word Press that’s basically everything I import from this blog. I keep it for specific reasons, and I might move there one day permanently. I recently had a comment from a young gay man who seemed slightly upset that I’d criticized “The New Normal” and other network TV shows for always portraying the stereotypical gays…men and women…for the sake of ratings and entertainment. And I tried to explain to him I’m not knocking the stereotypes at all. I’m not knocking effeminate gay men. I’d just like to see more gay men of all kinds represented in the mainstream. Because yes, there are “redneck” gay men. And all kinds of other gay men. Just as all groups or minorities have different types, so to speak. But if you watch reruns of “Sex In The City,” all you’re going to see is a very small segment of the gay community. And it’s not a segment with which I can identify as a man just as I’m sure someone like Bill Cosby couldn’t identify with the African-American stereotypes we used to see all the time in the mainstream. Thankfully, that’s ended for African Americans (for the most part). I think we’ll see the end of gay stereotypes as well. I just hope it’s in my lifetime.

Someone told me “The New Normal” was not renewed, and if this is true I’m not surprised. I tried to watch and I tried to give it a chance. But it just didn’t work for me.

A huge bravo for JoCasta Zamarripa for coming out as bisexual. The B in LGBT is probably the most unrecognized group in the world, and also the most underestimated. They tend to take a lot more unfair criticism as well, from both the straight and gay communities.

Wisconsin State Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa also helped elevate the B in LGBT this year when she came out as bisexual. And it was all in the name of full transparency, said the Democrat “It has always been my goal in office to be transparent and honest with my constituents. But before the primary in 2010, I didn’t have the valor and courage to come out. I feel remiss that I didn’t come out then.”

It’s also interesting to see someone in politics come out. As I stated earlier, I don’t think we should pressure anyone into coming out. But if you are living a public life this is one of the prices you pay sometimes. And Washington is probably the second most closeted town outside Hollywood when it comes to people guarding their public images.

In any event, it’s an interesting article and there were a few more surprises for me. You can get there from the link I provided above and read them all in detail at Towerload.