Thursday is “Coming Out Day” on campus, and of course, the College Republicans are holding a “conservative coming out day” to coincide with the festivities. This made me wonder, why do gay people feel the need to officially “come out?” If you’re gay, just be gay and live your life. For all the efforts of various organizations to equate the struggle for gay rights to the struggle for civil rights for minorities in this country, (which are not equal.. we’ll speak on that later) they sure don’t live it out equally. I never had to have a day of celebration or call in a family conference to announce that I was black or female. I have a friend, my loving cup of honey named Graham, who let us all know he was gay by casually mentioning his boyfriend in a conversation. Some of us were surprised, some people werent, but from that point on it was just a part of his life. That’s how I like things to roll: smooth, uncomplicated, and easy. No one needs to be “in the closet,” but is there really a reason other than self-aggrandizement to have a “coming out” parade? Just leave the damn door open; the people who feel like looking in can feel free to get in there and poke around.
In a perfect world, no one would feel pressed to announce their gayness with fanfare and emotional catharsis. In reality, I suppose you have to let ignorant people know these things before they start cracking innapropriate jokes around you (although that’s their problem and embarrassment). You have to let the opposite sex know before they start trying to get at you (although you could just cross that bridge when you come to it). You have to let the same sex know so they can start trying to get at you (although I would think that two like-minded individuals would be able to find each other). Basically, it seems like grand, public pronouncemnets and announcements of sexuality are for the comfort and convenience of other people, with little or no benefit to oneself. Isn’t that the opposite of self-affirmation? And anyway, to hear a black woman tell it, men need to be coming out that they’re straight, considering black men are automatically put on ‘down-low’ status until proven otherwise. (Just kidding, the down-low is a myth, and don’t you forget it!)
Maybe I should come out that I’m straight… you think my hair is throwing brothas off?