With every celebrity coming out, there are always people questioning why this is still a big deal, or how there is no straight pride day or any other possible comment of that sort. It’s 2014 and we should all be over that by now but the imperative word here is should because that’s not the reality.
Sure, if I could dream up a world, sexual orientation wouldn’t matter. We wouldn’t try to kill each other and so on but that’s not how it is. Teen suicides are still high. People get fired for their sexual orientation or identity. People are put in jail because they can’t help who they love, or they are even murdered for it. So I’d say, visibility does matter. And it will take us a long time until all of the above will not be an issue anymore. I’m not particularly sure I will see the day where homosexuality is not treated like a disease you can catch by standing too close to someone or by letting your kids watch a certain TV show.
And you can also tell how important it is for everyone to come out and be out. There is no openly gay professional soccer player in Germany that is still active. Only one high profile player had enough balls to out himself early this year, but he was already retired from the sport. It’s something male soccer players aren’t ‘allowed’ to be since it’s not fitting in with people’s definition of masculinity. Which os course is bullshit but how can we change this perception without visibility?
Same goes for football. After Michael Sam came out this month, his possibility of getting drafted in the NFL dropped considerably just because he is gay. That’s a fact.
You can watch the full segment here. I love how Jon Stewart pokes holes in the argumentation of homophobes but it also saddens me because there are still too many people who actually believe homosexuality is a sin. It boggles my mind that my cousins grow up in a world where being called gay on the schoolyard is still meant as an insult. It makes me mad that I’m scared to be out at work even though it probably won’t be an issue but you can never know it before you say something. No straight person has to go through that.
It’s like immersion therapy, once enough people are out, it eventually can become the non-issue being gay is meant to be. So, I’m sorry straight people, but you will have to hear about prominent people’s coming until then because it’s still a struggle for most of us. Actually, Ellen Page summarised it all very eloquently in her HRC speech.
Plus, it gives us gays the chance to yell: I KNEW IT! every time one of our crushes comes out. Or maybe that’s just me. (Looking at you, Maria Bello and Ellen Page!)
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