in his new memoir transparent, african-american cnn anchor don lemon reveals he is a gay-identified man. in an official statement lemon says, "today i chose to step out on faith & begin openly living my truth."
lemon's admission was not a secret. in fact, many of his co-workers & managers were keenly aware of his homosexuality. he now joins national television news anchors like rachel maddow & thomas roberts who have similarly acknowledged their sexual identities in a public forum.
"i think it would be great if everybody could be out," lemon told the new york times. "but its such a personal choice. people have to do it at their own speed. i respect that. i do have to say that the more people who come out, the better it is for everyone, certainly for the tyler clementis of the world."
tyler clementi is the gay-identified rutgers university student who committed suicide last fall. lemon futher laments, "i think if i had seen more people like me who are out & proud, it wouldn't have taken me 45 years to say it...to walk in the truth."
even beyond whatever affect his revelation might have on his television career, lemon said he recognized this step carried special risk for him as a black man. he told the new york times, "its quite different for an african-american male. its about the worst thing you can be in the black culture. you're taught that you have to be a man. you have to be masculine. in the black community they think you can pray the gay away."
as a same-gender-loving man of african descent, this writer is curious to know exactly what lemon means when he says, "more people like me." does he mean black men? professional black men? men over 40? men at cnn? other media folk?
as arsenio hall would say, things that make you go hmmmmmmmm.
- mark j. tuggle
- harlem, usa
- same-gender-loving contemporary descendant of enslaved africans. community activist, feminist, health educator, independent filmmaker, mentor, playwright, poet & spiritual being. featured at, in & on africana.com, afrikan poetry theatre, angel herald, bejata dot com, bet tonight with tavis smiley, blacklight online, black noir, brooklyn moon cafe, gmhc's barbershop, klmo-fm, lgbt community services center, longmoor productions, nuyorican poets cafe, our corner, poz, pulse, rolling out new york, rush arts gallery, saint veronica's church, schomburg center for research in black culture, sexplorations, the citizen, the new york times, the soundz bar, the trenton times, the village voice, upn news, uzuri, venus, vibe, wbai-fm, wnyc-fm & wqht-fm. volunteered with adodi, bailey house, inc., black men's xchange-new york, colorofchange.org, drug policy alliance, east harlem tutorial program, imagenation film & music festival, presente.org, save darfur coalition, the enough project, the osborne association, the sledge group & your black world. worked on films with maurice jamal & heather murphy. writing student of phil bertelsen & ed bullins. firstname.lastname@example.org.