As America gradually begins to accept the LGBT community and laws are changed and/or written to allow gays and lesbians the same rights as other Americans. More and more public figures are coming out of the closet as openly gay or lesbian but not all find it easy to come out of the closet. Many are still faced with the possibility of ridicule, or abandonment from family and/or friends, for many it is better to remain in the closet. They may feel the need to tell their loved ones the truth instead of living a double life but not all families are as accepting. Therefore, many remain in the closet and some live a lie and live how their family wish instead of how they want just to not have to go through isolation or abandonment.
Coming out for many is a big step, especially for teens who are experiencing feelings for the same sex but risk being ridiculed and bullied if they come out. They may also face isolation from family and friends because they are un-accepting or just do not know how to handle their young teen’s lifestyle. Today’s LGBT youth’s need good role models’ and someone to be there for them to show love and provide a ear to hear them and a shoulder to cry on when needed.
Today though, many public figures are coming out in support of gay rights and many are coming out themselves and as laws that protect and give the LGBT community equal rights are inputted. Many teens do find it easier to come out and just be themselves. Still, we have a long ways to go as many feel that it is their right to push their personal beliefs on the rights of other Americans.
Recently, Nike announced that it was signing WNBA rookie Brittney Griner to an endorsement deal, figures have not been made public but in their signing of the star, she became their first openly gay athlete to endorse their product.
Now, the media has another public figure who has come out as lesbian, this time it is in an arena that many may not of expected. South Carolina beauty queen contestant Analouisa Valencia is currently making headlines for being the first out gay contestant and she is also of a mixed heritage.
In an interview with NBC, Ms. Valencia said, “Last year, I did compete at state, but I wasn’t as comfortable because of the fact I was hiding who I was. This is my first year coming out and saying, ‘This is me, girls. Sorry, I’m going to be changing in the same dressing room as you. This is what’s going to happen.”
-Kelly J Newson