As a fashion icon, I can't tell u about everybody else's closet, I can only tell u about mine, and it's time I've come out.
One of the important things about being out, especially at the beginning of the protests given my platform, is that I didn’t want people to think that the only way that I had a platform was by hiding. I didn’t want any gay young boy or girl or trans person to think that the only way to make an impact is to hide your identity. So it was important to be publicly out really early. With that said, I spent so much time on the issues of policing and writing about structural things that I just wasn’t writing about myself at all.
It started out as a tweet: “Just because you didn’t know doesn’t mean I was hiding.” I’ve been in “the quiet,” not the closet. People can tell you about their identity on their own terms, but just because you didn’t know doesn’t mean someone was hiding this big secret from you. And so many of us are waiting for other people to signal that they also are in the Quiet, so they can realize that they’re not alone. I think about what happened at the protests — all of a sudden the Quiet is able to make noise.
Everybody’s journey is individual. If you fall in love with a boy, you fall in love with a boy. The fact that many Americans consider it a disease says more about them than it does about homosexuality.
Openness may not completely disarm prejudice, but it’s a good place to start.
No person is your friend who demands your silence, or denies your right to grow.
I've known I was gay since I was young, I think. And I mean young - like, young - like 5 or 6. I think most gay people or queer people know there's something different about them very early, but I didn't know what to call it.
I am here to take up space. Eff respectability politics. Eff patriarchy. Eff censorship on Femme bodies.
One of the only reasons that the world knows that I’m HIV positive is because of love. I got to a point in my personal life where I was like, fuck performing, fuck entertaining people, fuck trying to be famous. I want to have a boyfriend and not have to ask them to keep a secret about my personal life. Do you know what kind of feeling that is to like someone and immediately ask them if they can keep a secret? That’s no way to live. Quite honestly, I’m not trying to say this to be dramatic – I was willing to risk my career to have a real life. I know that I want to really get to a place where my notoriety can create a dialogue in my community to make change. I can see myself opening an LGBT centre one day and doing all of these things to help people.
Our art is its own kind of activism
I think it’s so important that people realize there’s a gold mine of talented women of color, and all we need is opportunity to show that.