Are People Claiming To Be LGBT For A Career Boost?
Do celebrities play the media? Do they take advantage of the LGBTQ press?
There was plenty of speculation on Aaron Carter’s sexuality leading up to his reveal. He’s performed at various LGBTQ events, including Chicago’s fabulous Market Days. Chris Crocker has heavily suggested that he’s been intimate with Carter. Now, Carter is trending on each and every LGBTQ blog. They're all covering his every move: being dumped by his girlfriend, doing a gay bar tour, and being overwhelmed with the out pouring of love! His gay bar tours are becoming sold out to see….Aaron…Carter!
Now, independent rapper, Lil Peep, comes out of the closet as bisexual. Peep, who was considered an unknown to anyone besides the LGBTQ Community (now), is trending on the gay blogs, too. Opinion aside, I will admit that I have grown to really LOVE Peep’s music after listening to his tracks the first time since a few days ago. He's now riding the wave of fame for doing exactly what most of us have done: coming out.
Then, there are celebrities like Kristen Stewart, Taylor Bennett (Chance The Rapper’s Brother), Colton Haynes, it seems every cast member on MTV’s Teen Wolf, Alia Shawkat are coming out as LGBTQ. They are now constantly in our media.
We've watched the struggles these celebrities above have gone through to finally emerge as their authentic selves. Several of them were outed by the media well before they personally chose to be out. Please, do not think I’m discouraging anyone from coming out of the closet and being true to themselves and to the world. I’d accept a date from Carter in a heartbeat, even more so now after his coming out! But, should we be suspect of recent trends? Maybe it's just me, maybe it's not, but the boost to fame that celebrities receive after coming out for real or for business is palpable.
Let's get back to the question at hand … are people using a new LGBTQ identification to rise? Is it a marketing tool or is it just a side effect of becoming a known friend of Dorothy? Are stars seeing the positives in being out and proud. For example, the two performers mentioned at the start of this post, Carter came out of the closet soon after a media meltdown and Peep soon followed Carter and now seems to be catering to the gay community. Both have been boosted above their previous star standings.
The LGBTQ Community has a powerful voice in media. Websites, social media, and blogs are regularly checked so we are informed of the latest hot topics, news, and everything in between. We rely on our media. We’ve pushed to have our media and paved our own way because there were no other options. We needed our own platform. So when it comes to the possibility of our media being used in a different way … I hate to see us getting taken advantage of, used for other reasons.
As a community that eats its own, are we so willing to accept the unknown?
I’ve witnessed the LGBTQ Community eat their own. Examples being Perez Hilton, Rosie O'Donnell, Kathy Griffin, nearly everyone was lighting a torch and heading to RuPaul's Drag Race contestant Valentina's home just two weeks ago. The LGBTQ medai giveth and taketh away.
Although, when a celebrity comes out of the closet, it seems we are blindly drawn to them and fall in love. Are these people trailblazers? Did the entire cast of Teen Wolf, whom have lived in glass closets, finally come out? Are we giving attention to only those who have followings and the faces to go with it. Ellen DeGeneres came, saw, and conquered coming out of the closet. We could not do it better than she did, but she was a true trailblazer.
I wish I could give the fame and notoriety that some of recently out or recently out for business stars receive instead to other citizens like free testing clinic counselors. They're getting stabbed, harassed, and provide a shoulder to lean on for nervous patients every day. They wake up and do it all over again, day in and day out. These are the type of people we should be admiring and honoring with attention and awards. Not someone who may be using the LGBTQ Community as a stepping stone for their rise…or comeback.
Writer's Note: This article was loosely inspired by the past drama surrounding Miley Cyrus using African-American culture to rise her career, then drop them once she hit super stardom.
You can read more about the Miley controversy here.
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