You might have heard by now, but country singer Chely Wright has come out of the closet on the cover of People magazine. No biggie, right? In a more tolerant time when we’ve grown up with gay characters on TV and movies, more and more celebs are busting out of the closet. Still, for every Neil Patrick Harris announcing they’re gay without much fanfare, there’s an actor somewhere under contractual obligation to remain closeted (or risk their careers in the process). Sadly, Hollywood sometimes equates “marketable” with “straight” — but we know through NPH’s career, that’s a bunch of crap. Many popular celebs are in “the glass closet,” like Jodie Foster, who neither confirms nor denies — she lets herself speak for herself. So that’s not to say EVERYONE MUST PUBLICLY COME OUT and represent! But it does help level the playing field.
(Keeping your stuff to yourself is harder to do nowadays, when outing stars has become a fun Internet guessing game. And if you’re a regular person — who’s in or out of the closet, or behind a glass one — it might feel intrusive when people question whether you are or aren’t.)
Besides Crushable favorite Johnny Weir (in above photo), here’s a group of 10 other stars — gay and straight — who are role models within the gay community and are helping to level said playing field: