Kevin Spacey, Your Application to the LGBTQ+ Community Has Been Rejected
Dear Kevin Spacey,
Your application to the LGBTQ+ community has been rejected. We do not have room in the community for those who wish to use us as a shield against sexual assault allegations. Your abusive behavior and harmful rhetoric are not welcome in our spaces.
For further details regarding your rejection, please see the following list of offenses:
Conflating homosexuality with predatory behavior
By choosing to come out after an allegation regarding the sexual assault of a minor, you have furthered the harmful stereotype that members of the queer community are predators. Coming out is a deeply personal decision, but by tangling it with these allegations you have implied there is a link between the two. There is not. Predators exist across the Kinsey Scale. By drawing a link between your sexuality and assault, you’ve done an extreme amount of harm to the community. This is not who we are. This is not what we stand for. This is not welcomed here.
Attempting to use your sexuality to deflect from assault allegations
This is not about you. This is not about your sexuality. This is not about coming out. This is about you attempting to force yourself on a fourteen year old. Your sexuality is not a tool to refocus headlines onto a different topic. You’ve succeeded in changing the narrative with a few media outlets, but most of us see through your charade. Were you expecting us to embrace you and defend you? How horribly misguided. We are not that desperate for a big name queer celebrity. We are stronger than that. We are not going to embrace you.
Perpetuating the myth that sexuality is a choice
Your use of the phrase ‘I choose to live as a gay man’ perpetuates the myth that sexuality is something we can choose. We can have preferences, of course. I’ve dated both men and women as well. And it’s true that now my preference leans towards women. The Kinsey Scale is a tricky thing. Even I don’t always use the word ‘bisexual,’ despite that definition being more accurate than many others. Perhaps your journey with your sexuality has been similar. Labels aren’t easy and many of us struggle with them.
Regardless of your journey, this isn’t a ‘choice.’ If you’d been a part of this community for any length of time you would know how much that single word stings and gives our detractors ammo against us. But that’s the thing: you aren’t part of this community, Kevin Spacey. You never have been. While coming out has been and always will be something each of us has to decide on our own, you are only choosing to label yourself now to deflect a very serious allegation. You have not been a part of this conversation and it’s clear you don’t know anything about what we go through.
Seriously? Anthony Rapp??
When Anthony Rapp was fourteen years old, he was not yet a household name. He was not yet Mark Cohen, the character of the iconic LGBTQ+ play Rent. It’d be over 30 years until he became Lt. Stamets, the first openly gay character in the Star Trek TV franchise. At that time, he was a young ‘nobody’ that you thought you could harm without consequence. To your misfortune (but thankfully the fortune of others), this one kid you targeted grew up to be an iconic voice in the LGBTQ+ community. How many other kids weren’t as lucky to rise in prominence and get to a position where they could generally safely speak out?
All of your victims deserve justice. According to the comments section on almost every article and according to anonymous commentators on dozens of forums, your abuse was an “open secret.” You were allowed to hurt people because when it comes to abuse in Hollywood, high profile names have the upper hand. With the recent Weinstein scandal, I hope more people feel safe coming out about the abuse they’ve faced. But it’s still an unfortunate fact that fame gives you an edge in these types of situations. You, Kevin Spacey, are famous. They are not.
Well, Anthony Rapp got famous. And he not only became famous, but he became a beloved icon of the queer community. He’s someone many people in the very community you are attempting to hijack have a great deal of respect for. You are not part of our community. But he is.
Kevin Spacey, you have been rejected. You may apply again NEVER.
Dear Anthony Rapp,
You don’t know me. A couple weeks ago you liked one of my tweets and I nearly cried. I’ve idolized you for years. I’m not alone when I say you’ve been incredibly influential. When I was in High School I watched Rent on repeat all the time. I’d sing the songs in the halls at school. I’d use the characters to understand my own sexuality during my incredibly vulnerable teenager years. It had a profound influence on me. I would not be who I am today if it weren’t for Rent.
Years later, when I was a junior in college, I went to New York and saw Rent on Broadway just a few months before it closed. You weren’t there anymore, of course. Your career had long since taken you away from Rent, but the influence of the show on me made that visit to New York a highlight of my entire life. I cried in the theater. It was powerful.
Having you take on the part of the first openly gay character in the Star Trek TV franchise has been monumental for me as well. It’s made me think critically about LGBTQ+ representation again. You’ve made history, just like you did with Rent, and the impact this character has had on me and many like me has been incredibly important. We can see ourselves in the Star Trek universe. We can relate to characters and use them to understand our own journey.
Thank you for being such an important part of the LGBTQ+ community for many years. Thank you for your bravery in speaking up about Kevin Spacey. Thank you for your openness. Just… thank you. Thank you thank you thank you.
A Proud Member of the LGBTQ+ Community
Author: Angel Wilson
Stephanie “Angel” Wilson is the admin of The Geekiary and a geek culture commentator. She earned a BA in Film & Digital Media from UC Santa Cruz. She’s contributed to various podcasts and webcasts including An Englishman in San Diego, Free to Be Radio, and Genre TV for All. She’s written for Friends of Comic Con and is a 2019 Hugo Award nominee for contributing fanfic on AO3.
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