Monday, May 16, 2011

Don Lemon of CNN: Welcome!

Don Lemon came out of his closet this morning, joining Rachel Maddow and Thomas Roberts of MSNBC this morning as out lesbian and gay anchors...though there are other out LGBTQ reporters on network news.

This from his interview via

“It’s quite different for an African-American male,” he said. “It’s about the worst thing you can be in black culture. You’re taught you have to be a man; you have to be masculine. In the black community they think you can pray the gay away.” He said he believed the negative reaction to male homosexuality had to do with the history of discrimination that still affects many black Americans, as well as the attitudes of some black women.

“You’re afraid that black women will say the same things they do about how black men should be dating black women.” He added, “I guess this makes me a double minority now.”

So why do it? It really came down to the act of writing the book. Mr. Lemon said he had been on a panel a couple of years ago called “The Black Man in the Age of Obama,” and was approached afterward by a publisher’s representative about writing an inspirational book.

“It was supposed to be a little pamphlet,” he said. “You know: say your prayers; have a good, hearty handshake; say good morning to your boss.”

But as he began to write, he came to realize that he could not hold back the truth of who he was. He started to pour out the details of his personal life. How he had grown up not knowing his father, how he had suffered abuse by someone close to him."

From my experience of teaching at NC Central University, an historically black college/university there are many young women and men who are LGBTQ who are deep in their closet. The fear factor is very high in this context.

Click here for more.

Welcome out, Don!



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