Last week at the Human Rights Campaign’s “Time to Thrive” Conference, actress Ellen Page openly admitted for the first time, that she is gay.
Over the past several years, the press has questioned the 27-year-old actress’ sexuality on numerous occasions, but there was never any evidence to prove it.
“I’m here today because I am gay. And because…maybe I can make a difference. To help others have an easier and more hopeful time. Regardless, for me, I feel a personal obligation and a social responsibility,” Page said to the crowd.
Over the past several years, other celebrities like Jim Parsons, Anderson Cooper, and Frank Ocean have also come out, hoping that the media and fan base would accept them for who they truly are.
“I can say that it’s warming to see other famous people such as Ellen coming out with her sexuality because slowly as times goes on it’s okay to be who you are,” junior nursing major and President of Pleasantville’s Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) Edwin Rodriguez said.
“I was surprised when I found out, I never really questioned it in the first place though, but I’m glad she [came out],” senior psychology and anthropology major Alanna Accinelli said. “It’s important that you accept who you are. She always seemed awkward in heterosexual roles, so I’m happy to see that she’s happy.”
My Two Cents:
The idea of someone coming out has become a right of passage in the gay community. It’s a milestone because of the amount of courage it takes to do it. Celebrities can often serve as a voice for the people and when we see them owning up to themselves in the public eye, it can give others the same courage. I’m a big fan of Ellen Page, I think between Juno and Inception she won me over as both a leading actress and supporting actress. Her audience is primarily younger, more specifically in the teenage crowd so I think her coming out could convince some of her fans that there is enough support and love out there that they should also come out.
In the all-boys Catholic High School that I attended, homophobia was a frequent topic that plagued the hallways. Some of my closest friends there were ‘in the closet’ throughout the entire time they were there. This was because of the amount of ignorance and idiocy that enveloped the student body. I’m not saying that if Ellen Page had came out when I was in high school my friends would have came out, but the speech she gave was so inspiring that it might’ve helped them deal with their secrecy, loneliness and accepting themselves for who they are. I think that if she hadn’t came out during that speech it still would have been an inspiring speech and the fact that she’s finally comfortable with herself and was willing to talk about it in a public space was great to see.