A journalist outed Lee Pace and it’s incredibly problematic

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It’s always very exciting for the LGBTQ+ community when somebody comes out and joins us, especially when it’s someone who lives in the public eye and who we admire.However, the thing about coming out is that it has to be done on one’s own time. Want to live out and proud? Cool. Want to be private about who you love? That’s cool too. It needs to be that person’s  decision to come out, not someone else’s.

So, while Lee Pace came out about 2 weeks ago, it isn’t as exciting for the LGBTQ+ community.He was technically outed in 2011, by Sir Ian McKellen, when he listed fellow actors working on the Hobbit he believed to be openly gay.However, Pace didn’t address his sexuality until recently, on March 5th. He didn’t come out of his own volition or choice. He was forced out of the closet by a journalist during a phone interview.

In a series of tweets afterwards, he addressed his sexuality by saying he was a member of the queer community and that he owns who he is. This same journalist, Brian Moylan, outed Anderson Cooper in 2012. He has no issue with forcing people out of the closet and claims that silence about one’s sexuality is problematic due to the struggles that the LGBTQ+ community faces.

Nobody deserves to have their life thrust into the spotlight without it being their choice.

However, outing someone is a problematic move. Some people face danger from family and friends due to their sexual orientations and some would simply rather live their lives privately. To force someone to come out is unethical.

Some members of the LGBTQ+ community believe that it’s no longer unethical to out someone when that person is a celebrity. If they live their lives in the public, then they shouldn’t be afforded privacy that isn’t given to straight celebrities.

It is believed that if LGBTQ+ actors are given that privacy, it contributes to the media’s discomfort when dealing with LGBTQ+ individuals. If actors aren’t out, then the media doesn’t have to talk about LGBTQ+ people. Is this true? Maybe.

However, celebrities appreciate their privacy just as much as regular people, whether they’re part of the LGBTQ+ community or not. Many actors with heterosexual partners aren’t public about their relationships and many celebrities don’t even have public relationships.

Whether or not the media likes to avoid talking about celebrities in gay relationships and people being gay in general, celebrities who are gay should be given the opportunity to come out on their own. Coming out and addressing one’s sexuality should always be a choice, even if people live in the public eye. While it’s always beneficial  for people to address homophobia and the struggles that the LGBTQ+ community faces, whoever is addressing it should be ready to do so on their own time.

Nobody deserves to have their life thrust into the spotlight without it being their choice.

Celebrities are normal people, and they should be given the same privacy as we are given in our day to day lives, no matter who they want to spend their time with. Queer people deserve to be treated with dignity, just like everyone else.

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