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International Law: Freedom to Differ
Come out, come out, wherever you are?: Magda Szubananski and coming out
Why did it take so long? Surely film and television are among the most gay-friendly industries around?
Ms Szubanski has been happy to talk openly about weight loss, so she?s not shy about her personal life.
There must be something else that stopped her, and is stopping other high-profile people, from coming out.
That?s a real shame. One of the reasons there?s residual anti-gay sentiment in the community is because people don?t relate to the issue, they don?t empathise.
It?s much harder to be vehemently opposed to gay marriage (as opposed to apathetic) if you know a normal, happy gay couple, or admire and watch a gay actor.
Unless there?s a genuine reason not to, high-profile members of the GLBT community really do have a moral obligation to come out, to give younger gay people role models. It doesn?t have to be because of a specific issue. It doesn?t have to be a big deal (although gossip pages probably make that hard).
But staying in the closet is passively admitting that there is something wrong.
While I'm sure Tory Shepherd meant well when she wrote that post for The Punch today, I am personally a little offended by her statement that high profile members of the GLBT community have a "moral obligation to come out" and that "staying in the closet is passively admitting that there is something wrong". Implicit in that suggestion is the idea that GLBT people who stay in the closet are somehow contributing to anti-gay sentiment in the community.
GLBT people stay in the closet for a whole variety of reasons but rest assured it is not because they don't want to, it because they fear the reaction of their friends and family members, as well as society in general. Failure to come out is not that person's problem, it is society's problem, and any suggestion otherwise is offensive. Coming out is a deeply personal process and some well-intentioned guilt tripping - especially from someone who is straight - is not at all helpful.
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