Coming Out Stories

 Posted by on 8 January 2014 at 10:00 am  Character, Firearms, GLBT
Jan 082014

I loved some of these stories about coming out in 2013, but I particularly enjoyed the comments of these two men:

First, “Chris Cheng, the Season 4 Champion of the History Channel’s Top Shot, came out of the closet in mid-December in an interview with gun magazine Recoil.” He said:

I was pleasantly surprised when other competitors found out I was gay. They were either indifferent or accepting. The most common response I received was “Chris, we don’t really care that you’re gay, we care about how well you can shoot…the better we all shoot, the more exciting the competition will be…” I suppose this affected the house dynamics in that I never heard any gay pejoratives during my six weeks there.

The shooting community was honestly one of the last places I expected gay acceptance on any level. That really caught me off guard, in a good way. It’s how life should be, where no one cares if you’re gay, straight, or somewhere in between. We should be evaluated and judged based on our skills and accomplishments. While I was hoping to break some stereotypes, some of my own stereotypes regarding the shooting community were also broken. It was an enlightening experience.

That’s awesome, and not surprising to me, based on my experience with fellow gun enthusiasts. Here’s another tidbit from him:

While it’s something my friends and family have known for years, I believe now that I have become a television personality and public figure, it is important to be honest and upfront about who Chris Cheng is. Thankfully, tolerance and acceptance are contagious. Being gay is no longer something to hide…One reason why I chose to come out publicly is that I’m a gay guy in a gun world. Hunters, sport shooting enthusiasts, and collectors are too often stereotyped as part of efforts to politicize guns as we witnessed last week on the anniversary of the horrific Newtown tragedy. Take it from someone who in a single package is not only gay, but Chinese, Japanese, California-born, a college graduate, a tech geek who worked on cool Google projects, a gun enthusiast and a passionate 2nd Amendment advocate. Our community is as diverse as anyone’s.

Second, “Irish actor Andrew Scott, who plays Moriarty in the BBC1 series Sherlock alongside Benedict Cumberbatch, spoke publicly about his sexuality for the first time in November when asked about Legacy, a BBC2 drama about spying between the UK and USSR during the Cold War years.” He said:

There isn’t a huge amount of footage of Russians speaking English as a second language, so I started looking at Vladimir Putin videos on YouTube. But then Putin introduced anti-gay legislation this summer – so, being a gay person, I switched to Rudolf Nureyev videos instead. It was another Nureyev defection of sorts! … Mercifully, these days people don’t see being gay as a character flaw. But nor is it a virtue, like kindness. Or a talent, like playing the banjo. It’s just a fact. Of course, it’s part of my make-up, but I don’t want to trade on it. I am a private person; I think that’s important if you’re an actor. But there’s a difference between privacy and secrecy, and I’m not a secretive person. Really I just want to get on with my job, which is to pretend to be lots of different people. Simple as that.

Hear, hear!

  • Tom Burroughes

    I think it was Barry Goldwater, late in his life when asked about the issue of gay people in the armed forces, who said that you don’t have to be straight to shoot straight.

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