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Coming Out: Zachary Quinto, “Star Trek” and “Heroes” Star, Says He Is Gay

by David Badash on October 16, 2011

in Civil Rights,Coming Out,News

Post image for Coming Out: Zachary Quinto, “Star Trek” and “Heroes” Star, Says He Is Gay

Zachary Quinto, best-known for his leading roles in the 2009 film “Star Trek,” and the TV series “Heroes,” has announced he is gay. On his personal website today, Quinto, 34, wrote the that suicide death of bullied teen Jamey Rodemeyer, as well as last year’s flood of anti-gay bullying related suicides, had caused him “indescribable despair.” And in an interview in New York Magazine published today as well, Quinto says that “as a gay man,” his work on the stage play, “Angels In America” made him realize, “there’s still so much work to be done.”

“when i found out that jamey rodemeyer killed himself – i felt deeply troubled,” Quinto writes on his website.

“but when i found out that jamey rodemeyer had made an it gets better video only months before taking his own life – i felt indescribable despair.  i also made an it gets better video last year – in the wake of the senseless and tragic gay teen suicides that were sweeping the nation at the time.  but in light of jamey’s death – it became clear to me in an instant that living a gay life without publicly acknowledging it – is simply not enough to make any significant contribution to the immense work that lies ahead on the road to complete equality.  our society needs to recognize the unstoppable momentum toward unequivocal civil equality for every gay lesbian bisexual and transgendered citizen of this country.  gay kids need to stop killing themselves because they are made to feel worthless by cruel and relentless bullying.  parents need to teach their children principles of respect and acceptance.  we are witnessing an enormous shift of collective consciousness throughout the world.  we are at the precipice of great transformation within our culture and government.  i believe in the power of intention to change the landscape of our society – and it is my intention to live an authentic life of compassion and integrity and action.  jamey rodemeyer’s life changed mine.  and while his death only makes me wish that i had done this sooner – i am eternally grateful to him for being the catalyst for change within me.  now i can only hope to serve as the same catalyst for even one other person in this world.  that – i believe – is all that we can ask of ourselves and of each other.”

Here’s the clip from his New York Magazine interview — which is absolutely worth reading in its entirety:

“Doing that play [Angels In America] made me realize how fortunate I am to have been born when I was born. And to not have to witness the decimation of an entire generation of amazingly talented and otherwise vital men. And at the same time, as a gay man, it made me feel like I — there’s still so much work to be done. There’s still so many things that need to be looked at and addressed. The undercurrent of that fear and that, you know, insidiousness still is swarming. It’s still all around us. To revisit that world at all, it took a toll on me. It definitely was an incredible experience but it was really daunting at times.”

On Twitter today, Quinto merely wrote, “my thoughts on the matter,” and linked to his personal blog.

Quinto, who lives in L.A. but seems to spend a great deal of time in my neighborhood in New York City, as he has petted our dog — albeit when my fiancé, not I, was walking him — comes across as a very feeling, caring, deep, and somewhat shy man. And now, we can add, “gay man” to that description.

Thank you, Zachary, for coming out. The world needs this. Millions of your LGBT fans and their families need this. You have done a great thing today.

 

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{ 12 comments }

bgryphon October 16, 2011 at 2:22 pm

And his words "living a gay life without publicly acknowledging it — is simply not enough" is exactly why people need to come out… rich and famous or "ordinary people". Only that will ensure the "momentum toward unequivocal civil equality" that we deserve.

colonelkira October 16, 2011 at 2:47 pm

He is not a hero and has not done a great thing today. he is a coward. Did it ever occur to any of you that maybe if he had been out all along some of these teenagers who potentially looked up to him might still be with us. At least he acknowledges this.

bgryphon October 16, 2011 at 2:51 pm

I agree that if he had come out sooner it might have made a difference. And if every gay person came out today it would make a difference. And if I had a $100 million I could make a difference… but if the only response to someone coming out is your "too late you coward" than all you do is drive people back in. At least your last line acknowledges that he didn't claim to be a saint.

superuber7 October 16, 2011 at 7:33 pm

Wow.

Considering how personal the decision to come out is, to call someone who comes out of their own accord a coward is despicable. It's not he was caught in an airport restroom or has been actively campaigning against gay rights.

I came out at 14 (20 years ago, eesh) does that somehow make me better than him? No. I came out in my own way in my own time as did he and yes, it IS a great thing. For himself especially and *potentially* for others. Who are you to take that away?

He's not the one posting anonymous disparaging remarks online.

colonelkira October 16, 2011 at 7:43 pm

If you can't argue your case in a logical and calm manner without hurling personal insults dont bother writing anything at all.

superuber7 October 16, 2011 at 7:48 pm

So you can call a man a coward for making a life decision and I can't point that out?

colonelkira October 16, 2011 at 5:11 pm

I disagree that it will drive them back in.

I am so tired of celebrities being rewarded or regarded as heroes for coming out! I mean I adore Zachary Quinto and have done since he starred in So NoTorious, but it pisses me off that anybody who shoves who they are in a "drawer" so they can get ahead in their chosen career is a coward in my books.

MrXorn October 16, 2011 at 5:29 pm

In the past, being gay would be enough to DENY him a career. Do you really think Hollywood would have given him the opportunity to play a leading man in Star Trek if he was out at the time? He had to weigh being true to himself and career suicide. Because gay acceptance is slowly growing, he felt he could finally do it. My fellow gay geeks and I applaud him for doing a scary thing and coming out. (The fact that having integrity and being one's self has to be a SCARY thing proves just how messed up our world really is.)

colonelkira October 16, 2011 at 5:42 pm

How would we know if it would have been denied unless he tried?

bgryphon October 16, 2011 at 6:18 pm

Accepting for the sake of argument that he, or anyone who doesn't immediately come out, is behaving in a cowardly fashion – when such a person makes a conscious decision to come out (as opposed to being 'outed' ) does not that action take courage and signal growth?

Or is it a simple matter of once you've labeled them a coward they have no hope of being (in your eyes) redeemed?

colonelkira October 16, 2011 at 7:40 pm

Not at all. Of course it takes courage to come out. No one is disputing that. I find it highly hypocritical when people go on about how we shouldn't live in the closet etc etc but when a so called celebrity chooses to it's a-ok in their books.

bgryphon October 16, 2011 at 8:00 pm

Your logic escapes me- you say that he (and presumably everyone else who doesn't immediately come out) is a coward – then you say "of course it takes courage to come out".

And how the heck did we get from congratulating him on coming out to supposedly being "a-ok" with a "so called celebrity" choosing to live in the closet? Or are you just pissed that no one is congratulating you?

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