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Role Call


So there’s talk around the web that Anderson Cooper is going to come out on his talk show some time next month.

A lot of people have been waiting for that announcement.  Some have even been demanding it.

Granted, like a lot of people, I am inclined to believe that the Silver Fox has a little sugar in his tank.  But, unlike a lot of people, I believe that if, when, and how he comes out is up to him.

A lot of folks use the “role model” argument to support their desire for him to step forward.  But I think in reality, most just want to be able to say “I knew it!” (DUH.) Or they believe that they would somehow be even closer to fulfilling their fantasy of bagging some celebrity tail.

If I thought that was even remotely possible, I would be stepping over Anderson (adorable as he is) and taking the biggest axe I can swing to Hugh Jackman’s closet door.  I got a feeling  there’s sugar in that big ol’ tank, too.  And even if I am right, him coming out doesn’t make my chances of doing some drilling Down Under even a fraction better.  I’d just still be tugging and squeezing to his pictures that fill up my hard drive.

The “role model” thing doesn’t fly with me either.

Because that’s not his job.  That’s not what he signed up for.  He signed up to be a journalist, and more recently, a talk show host.

I feel that way about all celebrities and athletes.  Gay or straight.  Just because they can sing and dance, throw a ball further and more accurately, or deliver the news better than the rest of us, it does not make them a role model.  It just makes them famous.

I don’t care if, in private, Lucille Ball gave it to Mr. Ed with a strap on, they both made me laugh.  And that’s all they signed on for.

Every one of you who is gay has a point in your life when you decide to come out.  Some early in life. Some in later years.  Some only partially.

Some not yet all.

There are reasons for waiting.  There are reasons for taking the plunge.  Everyone’s story is different.

And none of us knows anyone else’s full story.

So we can’t make demands.

We can hope.  We can wish.  But we can’t demand.

No doubt that if Anderson comes out, it may inspire some young gay man or woman to pursue their dream of becoming a news anchor.

But, the choice to be a role model, like the choice to come out, is his.

Lord knows I wouldn’t want Anderson Cooper up in my business telling me what to do.

Published inCelebrityGay Topics


  1. Chuck Chuck

    I pretty much agree on outing people (it’s up to them to decide when); but I’d make an exception for people who are in closet but actively campaigning against gay people, like some politicians.

  2. jdw jdw

    Tony, Anderson lives in Manhattan I believe with the owner of a gay bar and they are seen publivcly all the time. I think he just doesnt think he has to do it. Hugh Jackman is the Straightest Gay Man on record. As you said it shouldnt matter but when you have kids being bullied killing themselves and such, for lack of role models that are
    credible honorable and mainstream then its time to step up to the plate. IMHO.

  3. Paul from Q Paul from Q

    that bit about “what they signed on for” is right on. You talk of drilling , etc, reminds me I’m not going to get a BJ or get to F**k him–unless he comes to Albuquerque and, even then, not likely. I”m liking TTL. Keep IT up.

  4. Cb Cb

    I agree. Personally I don’t think my being gay is anyone’s business except mine (an the guy who’s fucking me at the time).

    I don’t define myself professionally, artistically, or athletically as being gay first.

    But this type of thinking doesn’t sit well with the “professional gays” who are gaygaygay 100% of the time and in your face about it.

  5. mike mike

    Hey Tony,

    You know I’m a big fan who has enjoyed your writing and your view of the world for years, but this question of “coming out” has hurt friends of mine, so I’m admittedly touchy.

    My challenge: why do you think Anderson Cooper isn’t already out? And, isn’t it time we all challenge the definition-of and rhetoric around “coming out”?

    Because it seems too many people in the lgbt world (not you) are just never happy with high-profile, out, gay guys who decide to maintain some degree of personal privacy.

    By the standards one would apply to you or I, Anderson Cooper is has been “out” for years. His family, friends, colleagues, and co-workers (and I suspect most, if not all, of his guests on his shows) know he is gay.

    When in public, he is not particularly secretive (which is different from wanting some personal privacy) about past and present boyfriends.

    AC is already out. Period.

    Beyond that, all other on-air or in-interview declarations – “I’m gay” “I’m a Vanderbilt” “My lily-white skin burns after 10 minutes in the sun” “I’ve got cancer” “My brother committed suicide” – falls entirely into the realm of how much of someone like AC wants to share of their private life.

    I believe AC has already taken the plunge and already is a role model for a lot of up and coming newsies, straight and gay.

  6. I think many times “role model” is confused with visibility. Visibility is so important! When you’re famous people feel like they know you so now struggling young people know someone and clueless others know a gay person. When you’re a non-famous person, like us, our friends and family now know a gay person and in turn they can say to others, “Hey! My_____ is gay.” Through knowing comes understanding.

    If you listen to any minority in any profession, but especially entertainment, politics, teaching and medical, they will say how inspiring it was to see that someone like them could make it.

  7. David SHP David SHP

    My business is my business, your business is your business. If I happen to find out about your business, good for me. If you find out about my business, stop being so nosey.

    On a side note: I once hooked up with a radio announcer and he talked in real life like he talked on the air; It was incredibly, incredibly annoying. I wonder if the Silver Fox is like that…..

    Dinner: Home made Calzone with fresh Motzarella (I haven’t posted my meal in a while…. I don’t think I did it once during West of Mayberry. ….seems just like yesterday.)

  8. Marcus Marcus

    I thought it was a given or open knowledge that Anderson Cooper is gay. I wonder if that’s one reason Kathy Griffin likes flirting with him even more than she’d otherwise do.

    As for another news anchor — or semi-anchor — whose sexuality has been a big question mark, that would be David Muir on ABC. If you don’t know the name, do a Google search for a photo of the guy.

    If it’s true that really good-looking guys are most likely to be hit on by both dudes & girls, then it’s easy to imagine that Muir plays both sides of the fence. Actually, the talk on the street is he’s mostly or fully into guys.

  9. condoguy condoguy

    A person’s sexuality is their own. Unfortunately we have grown up in a world where displays of hetrosexuality is openly accepted and not so much for gay people. It is a bit different here in Canada. AS a gay man who came out late in life, I don’t understand the pomp and pagentry that comes with some folks that are gay. I am not a fan of the annual parades. It is not a reflection of who I am as a person. If I want to celebrate the fact that I am gay I just hang out with my nephews who tell me they love me. That is the generation I am excited for. Anderson and those other stars who are gay should have known when getting into the business that it would eventually come out. I think the more he stays in the better it is for everyone because he becomes more and more universally accepted. Look at what Ellen has done for this generation. Nate Berkus is another great example of a gay man who I feel represents what I consider to be “normal”. But that is just my opinion. You don’t have to agree with it, just acknowledge the fact that it is Ok to express it. Sound familiar?

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