Michael Jortner's picture

American Horror Story's Naomi Grossman: LGBTQ Advocate

You want a little Pepper on that? Sure, I’ve got some for you – directly from the red carpet in at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills.

Actress Naomi Grossman – who played the character of Pepper on American Horror Story for two seasons – described herself as an “advocate” for the LGBTQ community. And I kind of believed her, seeing as how we were both at a major annual fundraiser for LA’s LGBT Center.

Why are you here tonight?

Because I’m a little bit Babs, kinda Liza…and a whole lot of…well, I’m my own self. At then end of the day I’m a real advocate [for the gay community}.

As an LGBTQ ally how would you describe your journey in terms of accepting gay people. Did you have to evolve into it or was it immediate for you?

It was immediate. My family had a million gay friends. We’re artists so we’re automatically sort of allowed. My parents were not, but I wondered about my dad. He was always so well-dressed, very artistic. He was an architect…the original metrosexual. So I always wondered.

He’s not…but he gave me hope. He made me feel like, “You know what? There are straight men out there that can dress. They care about the way things look.”

I’ve met straight guys who go to gay bars because gay guys’ straight girlfriends come with them and then they can just clean house.

Oh wow! I’ll have to try that. Actually, I do try that. [laughs]

A lot of people are here tonight because they value equality and social change. If you could                                                                                wave a magic wand…what kind of change would                                                                             you most want to see?

God. I think I’d just take away Trump’s Twitter.

I think that would solve a lot of problems. Obviously I’m being cheeky, but if we could just respect each other…which would be taking away his Twitter.

He’s been an advocate for anti-cyber bullying…and yet he’s the cyber bully OG!

On American Horror Story you played Pepper, a character living with microcephaly. What has having been on that show brought to your life?

I mean, it’s definitely been fan interaction. The fact that I, honestly…[would wake] up at night fearing a backlash. I assumed [the disabled community] would be after me, [seeing me as] taking away a role [from a disabled actor], but it’s been quite the opposite. Now [people with disabilities] ask me to come to their events and speak on their behalf.

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