So, let me just get this out of the way immediately. Any individual’s sexuality is none of our business. You do not presume. You do not ask. You do not manipulate someone into disclosing their preference with clever questions like; “If you could pick a famous Valentine, who would you pick?”
That said, it’s different when someone explicitly expresses their preference publicly. If they have any measure of celebrity, they invite the world to consume this information, and typically we celebrate that in the LGBT community. We praise actors, actresses, musicians and athletes who brave the temperament of the masses and potentially endanger their respective careers for being courageous in a hostile social climate.
That’s usually the case. However, it has become trendy to latch on to and exploit the LGBT community by subtly hinting at or coyly referring to the possibility that they could, maybe, might be, would-in-the-right-circumstance-with-the-right-person-on-a-winter-solstice… take a dip into the same-sex pond.
Lady Gaga came out as bisexual to much fanfare, then turned around and came out as straight during Atlantic City Pride in 2014. By then she already had already embedded herself indelibly in gay culture, enthusiastically belting catchy gay-themed anthems from the stages of sold out concerts which were attended by mostly LGBT audiences who saw her as a figurehead, essentially legitimizing their very existence.
Katy Perry, the daughter of a Preacher, tried it with her 2008 inaugural hit “I Kissed A Girl” and followed it up by incessantly toying with the LGBT community by remaining lucratively ambiguous. This works because gay men turn them into modern icons, straight men fetishize their sexuality- because many heterosexual men generally accept gay women far more than gay men. Smart women know that Heterosexual men objectify female sexuality, going as far as to view lesbianism or female bisexuality as explicitly for their sexual entertainment. Both Lady Gaga and Katy Perry have never had a public same sex relationship but have maintained multiple high profile heterosexual relationships. On the flip side, Lindsay Lohan and Kristin Stewart, neither of whom publicly announced their sexual preferences until it was too evident to obscure, have openly engaged in same-sex and heterosexual relationships without needing to justify or announce it for the glory of a headline.
And then there are people like James Franco and Nick Jonas who are suckling off the teat of the LGBT community like it’s their lifeblood. Nick has eluded to the idea that, while straight, in all of his hundreds of interviews with the gay media he says things like this;
From that very article, he says;
The star, who is currently promoting his new album, “Last Year Was Complicated,” shrugged off those who believe he hasn’t been upfront about his sexuality and may be secretly gay.
“But as me, Nick, I am very open about who I am and that I have nothing to prove,” he said. “I know what I am, I’ve been honest about that.”
No denial, no confirmation. He has too much to lose. The gay media loves a sexually ambiguous young guy. These Men groom themselves to reflect the gay male gaze. For their fans, it gives them permission to have their teenage dreams and Happily-Ever-After fantasies. It’s what men like Franco and Jonas leverage for financial success. The proper term for it is “Gay Baiting.” I hate that term, specifically because it implies gay men are empty headed husks lead solely by their libido. It is true, however, that every disenfranchised community has an insatiable desire for idols. We all want to do what we couldn’t as children. As where hetero girls could fawn over New Kids On The Block and other teen heartthrobs and hang posters of them all over their school lockers and bedroom walls, gay kids were left to repress the objects of their childhood affections and suffer through their sexual awakening in shame and isolation.
Never has there been a more stomach turning incident of gay baiting than that of Andrew Brady. Brady, a recent contestant on the UK version of The Apprentice, was cast on Celebrity Big Brother alongside gay Drag Queen Courtney Act, an alum of the pop culture phenom that is Rupaul’s Drag Race. Immediately, Brady recognized her popularity in the house and with the greater public. He fawned and flirted and teased and taunted Courtney throughout his stay… Until his fellow male housemates started making jokes at his expense. One fellow housemate called him out, saying; “If Courtney goes, whose dick are you going to gravitate to?”
There was no questions that Brady was seduced, not by Courtney, who presented as Male through most of his stay in the house, but by the cheers he heard as thousands of fans chanted Courtney’s name each week. And although Courtney had never suggested they take their antics beyond friendship, Brady started making a vested effort to reinforce how straight he was, saying of an attractive female housemate “I’d love to smash that.”
He also took Courtney aside to assert the fact that he was just his friend and not to expect anything more than that. Courtney, who won hearts all over the nation with his compassionate appeal to young LGBT people watching, passively educating the housemates and by proxy the entire world on gender diversity with the kind of dignity you don’t typically expect from those of the Drag Queen fare, came out the winner by a landslide.
Andrew came in fifth place, but in reality, he came out the winner as well- By clinging to the coattails of a beloved, far more famous figure. He was no sooner evicted from Celebrity Big Brother than he was doing interviews with gay media who had eagerly embraced him like some hero coming home from war.
During the finale, one would easily have mistaken Courtney for his significant other. He escorted Courtney on his winner’s walk down the runway, both greeted with screams of approval. Brady affectionately held the small of his back and even kissed him on the stairs upon their exit from the studio. He made sure that whenever the cameras were on Courtney, they were on him also.
I am lost on why LGBT folks must celebrate heterosexual men who demonstrate kindness and respect. It’s equivalent to saying; “Hey, thanks for not beating us up or killing us, so you get an award!” To say Andrew Brady has been milking his friendship with Courtney Act is minimizing it. He has booked countless appearances at gay nightclubs, pride parades, and posed for gay magazines. He has found his demographic via Courtney Act, and he’s gone so far as to post a screencap from the series, captioned with; “Will You Be My Valentine Courtney Act?”
Will you be my valentine @courtneyact ❤️ #ValentinesDay
This isn’t the first time an innocent LGBT individual has fallen victim to a fame-whoring predator who sought attention by proxy. Recently, Lauren Harries, who is a Transgender woman and coincidentally another past Celebrity Big Brother participant, went on the TV show Loose Women to introduce her new boyfriend, 20 year old Connor Yemm. On the show he brought her flowers, discussed their relationship and future plans as a couple. He leaked photos of themselves and gave interviews to the press to, not just exploit, but monetize his association with Harries.
Afterward, she allegedly caught him in bed with another man. In retaliation, Yemm called up every magazine in Great Britain to say “I was never in a relationship with Lauren Harries.” Despite the photos of them kissing, cuddling and taking lavish holidays sunbathing nude. He did an about face and rejected her, publicly humiliating her. Yemm, who claims to be an actor who has played the role of “Extra” in various television series, was clearly hoping to raise his profile by attaching himself to Harries, who is a mainstay in the British tabloids.
Lauren Harries was heartbroken by the betrayal as Yemm made the rounds, offering up his story to any journalist who would give him column space. Despite this, he continues to retweet articles about Lauren on his twitter feed although the two haven’t spoken. In the months after the arduous dissolution of their relationship, Harries went to instagram to say one thing;
“I was in Love.”
Sadly, the severely misguided Yemm, who has never been in the public eye, much less as a celebrity, blames Harries for “Using me for Press” and dubbed her, ironically, a “User.”
Yemm has launched some pretty heinous attacks on Harries, who had him stay at her lavish Cardiff home, spent money taking him on spectacular holidays and spoke highly of him- despite his shockingly evident exploitation of her. To put it simply: Connor Yemm is a nobody. Lauren Harries is an accomplished celebrity. Not the other way around. They’ve both admitted they have never had sex, by Lauren’s account, every time the opportunity arose to be intimate, he made an excuse, started a fight, blamed her for ruining it and left her alone for the evening.
He was gaslighting her.
Yemm wanted, via Harries, what Brady achieved by proxy of Courtney Act. The gay idolization. The fawning cheers of gay men and countless articles and shirtless centerfolds. He wanted to ride the gay train to fame. For Yemm, it backfired. Harries is famous, but not current enough. For Brady, he knew to strike while the iron was hot- at the height of Courtney’s career.
Brady and Yemm are the same person. Men who attach themselves to a beloved figure like a parasite in an effort to bask in the glow of flashbulbs and adoration. Neither of them deserve the attention they’ve been given.
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