There Are Rumors That You Are Gay: What is the Enlightened Thing to do?

Recently Mike Piazza was faced with rumors that he is gay. He came out and said that he is not, and that he wouldn’t have a problem with a player who was. This got me thinking. What is the best way to handle this knowing it could effect your career (whether that is fair or not)?

A. Declare that you are not gay (even if you are) w

B. Declare your sexuality honestly (whatever it may be)

C. Tell everyone to fuck off. It is your own damn business and shame on folks for being rumor mongers or even caring!

I’m leaning towards C. Piazza went with A. attaching that oh so common disclaimer “not that there is anything wrong with that”. I kind of think a bigger move would have been to just let everyone wonder. Anyone who it would matter to deserves the torture that not knowing must bring them. People need to grow up if rumors about peoples sexuality still make big news. Who the hell gives a shit?

DaLovin’ Dj

DEFINITELY try sleeping with the same sex. :smiley:

Okay, okay, I’m biased. Um…

I think the reason people don’t lean toward C is because then many people falsely assume that this means they are gay and just don’t want to say so. To some extent, I understand people choosing what Mike did. They truly may not think a damn thing is wrong with gay people but know that so many people have issue with homosexuality and not being homosexual, he sure doesn’t want to deal with it. (Not that homosexuals just LOVE dealing with this kind of crap.) So he says, “Hey…I’m not gay. However, there’s not a damn thing wrong with it.” I guess the next step might be for him to say, “There’s not a damn thing wrong with it and if you think there is, you’re wrong.”

But yeah - definitely sleep with the same sex.



D. Play up to it in a light-hearted way.

If your employer seems bothered, prepare for a tribunal, or at least an honest discussion to clarify matters. If not, who cares? If your behaviour leads others to question your sexuality, then it’s their problem.

I think these types of rumors are never productive, and I can’t stand the people who start/spread them. Therefore, I would do everything possible to mess them up.

Confirm the rumor immediately if it is false, and deny it outright if true.

Piazza certainly went with A. Let’s assume he was honest, so that A = B in his case.

This rumor could cost Piazza millions of dollars in potential endorsements. Naturally. he would want to deal with the rumor in whatever way best serves himself.

How to deal with it for ordinary people is a good question. I have two friends who I’ve been told are gay, but I never discussed sexuality with them, and do not ever expect to do so. Suppose they’re not gay. How could they correct their reputation? It’s not easy to see what they could do.

You’re ignoring the celebrity factor. What’s right for Mike Piazza might not be right for you or me. I mean, when I came out of the closet I didn’t have to consider the devaluation of my endorsement price, or the possibility that some whacko fundie a thousand miles away might take it into his head to send me to hell.

That aside, I think the subjects of such rumors should simply ignore them. To acknowledge your gayness when “outed” is to be complicit in the outing. To deny it, whether you’re gay or not, implies that it’s something to be ashamed of.

This is a vast oversimplification, but I’m working from the ideal situation, where neither homo- nor heterosexuality is deemed culturally preferable, so such rumors would be adjudged irrelevant and silly and not worthy of response.

I’d go with A, and then find the nearest guy (I’m a guy as well) and kiss him full on the lips. Seriously.

as a private citizen, my answer would be “why on earth would you ask such a question, and expect me to answer?” As a celebrity, whilst wearing my tiara, my answer would be “dah-ling, why on earth would you ahsk such a question and expect me to ahnswer?”.

(assuming that if I were a celebrity I’d be the sort that generally keeps a line between my private life and public life, sort of the anti Madonna)

I think saying you’re straight - potential 2 things : 1. The Tom Cruise Effect - the more you stamp your feet and scream ‘I’m straight’, the less likely folks will believe you 2. If you’re lying, it’s raising the stakes for you to be ‘outed’. And that can be awfully tempting for prior lovers/friends etc.

If you say you’re gay, and lying about it - to what end? If it’s true that being thought of as gay would be harmful to your career, then falsly announcing you’re gay to the world would have neg. consequences to your career and the only positive of a mental ‘up yours’ to those who ask. Saying you’re gay and you are per the OP would have negative consequences to your livlihood.

e. Quickly get married and become a Scientologist.

E: Call a press conference, and invite the press to answer two questions, which you will also answer to their with the precise level of honesty as they do.

Have you ever practiced any sexual act other than face to face intercourse with your legal spouse?

Do you solemnly swear to make a public statement should that fact ever change?

Sit back, and then say, And my answers are: “Of course not!” and “I certainly shall!”


If the person is a public figure, then I say they should simply say “yes I am” or “no I’m not” and leave it at that.

I think [bold]wring[/bold] is right on this one.

For the rest of us non-famous types, I think someone would have to have a lot of gall to even ask us the question. If they did I’d just give them a hard look and turn my back on them. It’s none of their f**king business!

I’m not just blowing smoke here. I’m a gym rat hit the showers every day after my workout. Since I’m completely shaved, including my pubic area, and have a PA piercing, I tend to get some funny, side-long glances from some people. It made me a little self-concious at first, but now I couldn’t care less. So far no one has ever asked me if I’m gay or not, or given me a hard time because they think I might be gay (although I have had a few guys hit on me). But I suppose it might be different if I wasn’t the biggest guy in the gym.

By the way, I’m straight – but I might be gay if I didn’t love women so much!

FTR I’m not gay (as far as I know).

I think my response would be “oh, that’s what you think, is it?”.

If the issue was pressed, It would be “No, I’m not, but you go ahead and fill your head with whatever drivel suits you best”.

but that would be it; refuse to be drawn.

I should have added (as it is easy to read in whatever intonation you like) that “oh, that’s what you think, is it?” would be spoken with as much disinterest as I could possibly manage.

FTR I am gay. As far as I know. :slight_smile:

I’d have to go with either “B” or “C” with expletives deleted. “A” seems to play into the negative mindset of the questioner, by answering with a denial – as if the question were actually an accusation which requires refuting. Either answer the question honestly (“I’m straight” or “I’m gay” or “I’m bi” or “I don’t know” or…) or don’t answer at all. That way, no matter what happens later, you will have given an answer you can live with. There is nothing wrong with opting not to answer, if you feel that the honest answer could hurt your career as a celebrity and keeping the truth out of the public forum hurts no one.

And then, personally, I’d follow up with the question: “Have you come out as a heterosexual yet?”

I’ve had to confront this in the past, and might have to confront it again at a family reunion in July; many of my older relatives seem to think that I’m gay (not that they’d tell me that – one doesn’t talk about such things in public, dontcha know).

After all, I’m almost 40 and unmarried; as far as they know, I’ve never even kissed a female (sadly, that’s been true for the last 11 years). The simple truth is that I have no romantic life whatsoever – my last date was in either 1989 or 90, and I haven’t been in a relationship since 1986.

Basically, women don’t seem to be interested in me, and most women don’t interest me – the ones that do are invariably uninterested or unavailable. It sucks, but I’ve come to accept it.

Anyway, if the issue comes up, I’ll just ignore it. Who cares what they think?

Someone asked Kevin Spacey this exact question, and he said he wouldn’t answer it because it’s nobody’s business. He also said it would be unfair to his gay friends whether he said yes or no (although I can’t quite remember how it would be bad if he said yes, unless he felt he was outting someone by proxy).

Anyway, it doesn’t deserve an answer. Sometimes just a long stare, with no verbal response, is very effective.

Two answers are acceptable to me: the truth, whatever it might be, or a quite firm “NOYB.”

Which is what I think is appropriate.

I can think of a wide variety of reasons why somebody might need or want to know whether someone else is gay, ranging from the inane to the heartfelt. (Examples of both: I would prefer to avoid the embarrassment attendant on introducing Jerevan to a young woman who thinks he’s really cute and wants to go out with him; a closeted kid stressing because he’s being taunted might need someone to intervene and befriend him.)

But the only acceptable reasons for asking would be things on the order of, you want to take him/her to bed.

Mike Piazza would be as good a baseball player regardless of what he does with his bat off the field, so to speak. And his sex life should be the sole concern of himself and the person or persons he might be sleeping with.

I was actually thinking more recently about this very topic–though in a slightly different way perhaps. I was thinking about how a gay man may hide the fact he is gay–you know there are still many places in the US where it is unwise to “come out” suddenly–or at all for that matter.

If such a man asked me how to best hide it, I’d tell him this. You don’t want to react too strongly one was or another about it–that after all will draw attention to you. If someone asks you whether you’re gay or not, just chortle a little bit a first, and give no immediate answer, because it is not tha important to you. If they persist, laugh a little again and say that while you have nother against gays per se, you are not one yourself. Remember, don’t get enraged–that will focus more attention on you.

Having now brought up this subject, I just have to add something that I also have figured out for some time now. It falls under the general heading of hiding your orientation from the people you live with–in particular your parents. If you do own gay magazines, like Advocate e.g., don’t ever hide them in your sock drawer! That’s the first place your mother goes to when she puts your fresh laundry away! Here’s what you do. Find a stack of old magazines in an area of your room people rarely go. Make sure they are completely innocuous–like People or Life or something. Then careful place the “incriminating” magazine under the stack. Don’t put them at the very bottom though. Your mother may pick the stack up to dust or something after all. Place it second to last. Or even in the middle for that matter. And tell your family members you wish to hold on to these magazines for N. reason–so don’t touch 'em ever! Classic, isn’t it?

My cousin (a male BTW) did the same sort of think with Playboy’s when he was in HS. Only thing is he simply took the covers off all of them. It just looked like a stack of harmless, albeit beat up, magazine. Classic again, don’t you think. Don’t buy or possess porn if you’re underage–because that is illegal. And foolish if you have to break the law or otherwise put yourself in danger to do it. But if you are going to do it anyways, what can I say…


So, 3way, how you doin’? :wink:

And Jim, those all sound like pretty clever strategies, but I’m uncomfortable with the idea of a grown man’s having to be so sneaky about something that’s nobody else’s business. (I know, gay folks, I know, I can say that only because I’m lucky enough to be in the socially-accepted “normal” category so I don’t have to do it myself…still seems sad.)

Kimstu, I think you may have slightly misunderstood the point of my post. I was just reminiscing about childhood and adolescence–not even necessarily my own. My mother was very open-minded when it came to sexual matters. She even bought me the paperback version of Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Ask. My father, whom I now live with, is a little less open-minded perhaps. But he is very easy going, much like me. So although he is aware I occasionally the Penthouse, the Hustler and the like–you know just for the stories ;)–he doesn’t mind too much.

No, I just thought I’d pass my wisdom onto others. I don’t plan to ever have children of my own–just don’t want them for some reason. So I figure if I can pass some advice that can be used by any young or vulnerable person–really of any age–then my life was not in vain.

Anyways where else am I going to share this info–on the Martha Stewart message board? That evil woman would have my hide. Just kidding. I think. :slight_smile: