Comments

  1. says

    OK, the guy started his career by designing drag queens’ doll. What else left in the closet ?? I think his family would be more proud that he dressed “the first lady” (regardless whom he sleeps with.)

  2. says

    Oops.

    I ‘outed’ Jason Wu five years ago in an interview for Out Front Colorado.

    He said he played with Barbies as a kid and found inspiration for his design by going out to the gay clubs.

    In fairness, I don’t think I actually asked him if he was gay but frankly, I didn’t think I needed to.

    All this brouhaha just seems weird.

    I refer to him as gay several times and I know he and his management got copies of the paper.

    I’ve got the original interview reposted up at http://www.MileHighGayGuy.com.

  3. crispy says

    I am looking forward to “Who Outed Jason Wu: Part Three” in which we learn that upon his birth at a Taipei hospital, he swooped out of his mother’s womb, looked up at a nurse and said, “Gurrrrrl.”

    The nurse then whispered into his mother’s ear, “Honey, he’s a flamer.”

  4. voet says

    This is begining to sound like a promising idea for a reality show–“Who Outed Jason Wu?” Each week could feature a different person making the claim. At the end of the series, the winner could get a designer wardrobe, a Ru Paul doll and a trip to Jason’s homeland.

  5. justcurious says

    I respect the work that Andy has done to promote gay rights, but before we get to Part Three, I’d like to ask a few questions…

    Did Andy profile Jason Wu before this controversy began, or did he wait for a negative story to come out?

    When was the last time Andy featured gay Asian-American men in a positive light?

    When was the last time Andy posted homoerotic photographs of Asians or Asian-Americans?

    I understand some people’s need to cast gay Asian-Americans and their families as odd, different, non-assimilating, and somehow a threat to “Western” progress, but..

    Asian-Americans voted against Prop 8 in higher percentages than any other racial group. Has Andy discussed this fact as extensively as he is covering this unsourced Jason Wu rumor? Has he discussed it at all?

    Just curious.

    PS: I don’t have stats on Taiwanese-American voters, but 60% of Chinese-American voters opposed Prop 8. And in Wu’s native Taiwan, about 75% of people believe homosexuality is acceptable. How’s that for progress?

  6. justcurious says

    I respect the work that Andy has done to promote gay rights, but before we get to Part Three, I’d like to ask a few questions…

    Did Andy profile Jason Wu before this controversy began, or did he wait for a negative story to come out?

    When was the last time Andy featured gay Asian-American men in a positive light?

    When was the last time Andy posted homoerotic photographs of Asians or Asian-Americans?

    I understand some people’s need to cast gay Asian-Americans and their families as odd, different, non-assimilating, and somehow a threat to “Western” progress, but..

    Asian-Americans voted against Prop 8 in higher percentages than any other racial group. Has Andy discussed this fact as extensively as he is covering this unsourced Jason Wu rumor? Has he discussed it at all?

    Just curious.

    PS: I don’t have stats on Taiwanese-American voters, but 60% of Chinese-American voters opposed Prop 8. And in Wu’s native Taiwan, about 75% of people believe homosexuality is acceptable. How’s that for progress?

  7. paul c says

    @Justcurious — what you point out about the Taiwanese is interesting, but you can’t fault Andy for everything he doesn’t cover. Seriously, one person can only do so much.

    If you think there is a gap in what he posts, that’s an opportunity for you to pick up the slack and enlighten the rest of us to what you know…whether it’s by posting it here or giving Andy a heads up or starting your own blog.

    The more voices out there sharing info with others, the more well-rounded and well-informed we can all be.

  8. says

    Is anyone really so prejudiced that they’re against Asian Americans? Do we really still have to list the virtues of the Asian American community on the comments section? I will just never understand the things that people choose to get their panties all in a bunch about.

  9. justcurious says

    @Milkman: Yes, racism exists. Didn’t you know? And it’s important to address notions that Jason Wu is imposing his “Eastern views on the rest of us,” conforming to “a third world country’s bigotry to gays,” and not assimilating to “our ways.”

    @Paul: Some good points.

  10. weekendretreat says

    JUSTCURIOUS, I think the “Eastern views” bit was in reply to Bading’s lectures about our ignorance of Asian sensitivities. Surely neither Wu nor Bading can genuinely expect the NYT to magically know that it’s not kosher for them to mention his bf lest his parental units get deranged.

    Andy has a fairly narrow range of men (boiz?) that he features, much to my chagrin (and that of many others), but it’s his blog and surely leaving out Asians, Latinos, Blacks, bears, leatherdaddies, body-modders, trannies, etc. doesn’t necessarily mean he’s propagating negativity as you suggest – maybe he’s just not into them. There’s lots of racism about, but Andy Towle has done his fair share of work against it.

  11. bading says

    What about Luke Song of Mr. Song’s Millinery in Detroit? He of the fabulous Swarovski crystal-encrusted Aretha Franklin hat? Should he ‘come out’ now lest his extended Asian family find out sooner rather than later? Does it really even matter whether he’s gay or not? Or whether he even has a boyfriend? I think not. Was it perhaps a bit presumptuous of the NYTIMES to assume that Jason Wu’s family would not be affected by their casually mentioning his boyfriend? I think yes! What if Jason Wu was Iranian? That oh so flippant aside would have marked Jason Wu as a dead man. And think of the repercussions it would have on his family back home in Tehran. If he was Iranian. All you one-and-only-one-model of gayness adherents need to think about that.

  12. justcurious says

    @Weekend: Have you seen Queerty.com? They show more colored gays… I didn’t know that Andy has actively fought against racism. Good for him. What kinds of things has he done?

    @Bading: Do you know for a fact that the NYT outed Jason Wu to his extended family? Has he issued a statement confirming the rumor?

  13. rudy says

    Bading, Hon’ put down the crack pipe. You are sounding more and more delusional. I believe you summed up your predicament when you admitted that, “[You] think not.”

    It is called an admission against interest and therefore admissible as evidence for the truth of the matter stated.

    In contrast, I operate on the assumption that one has not had a frontal lobotomy and, therefore, it is more than obvious that Mr. Wu is not only a designer of women’s fromal wear with limited talent but is also a flaming queen. P.s. And I like my queens flaming, not that every gay man is or need be so. In Mr. Wu’s case, however, he is.

  14. weekendretreat says

    @Bading – are you just trying to say that reporters should always ask someone in case they are closeted? Should they also check with a straight caucasian interviewee who has a black girlfriend just in case his family aren’t down for the brown? Better also find out if they’re Catholic and secretly living in sin.

    Your argument seems to be that reporters should do some form of racial/ethnic profiling before deciding what is on the record. Utter nonsense. If Wu didn’t want it mentioned, he shouldn’t have had his bf around and/or should have asked the reporter not to mention it. He has a right to privacy but he bears responsibility for letting the press into his life.

  15. Bading says

    Rudy, sweetie, take your Haldol. Did you miss my statement that said I also think yes?

    Cultural Sensitivity Lecture # 9:

    In the mid-80’s, we in the Asian Caucus within Act-Up were very frustrated that AIDS awareness literature was not penetrating the NYC Asian communities more effectively. After dinner at Hop Kee on Mott St., we were comparing the pithy sayings we got on our fortune cookies and BINGO!!! We post-haste ordered fortune cookies with AIDS awareness slogans in them. Needless to say, they were a big hit in the same Asian communitites that resisted the in-your-face, confrontational outreach that we were doing.

    Moral of the story: Honey good, vinegar bad!

    Moral of the story:

  16. MAJeff says

    If you don’t want news media to note you have a boyfriend while they are doing a personal profile of you, you make sure your boyfriend and evidence of him are absent from your home when you have the reporter over. Or you meet the reporter elsewhere without your boyfriend. The Times reporter did nothing wrong in writing a standard news profile.

    We spend too long fighting against institutions that actively support and produce the closet. No way should we be engaging in activities that ask them to reimpose it. If someone, particularly a public figure, wants their life to remain hidden, it’s their responsibility to hide their life.

  17. says

    This story, or rather the response to it, is getting more and more surreal. I agree, MAJEFF. The NYTimes was faulted for years for closeting our lives. Now they’re treating us–or attempting to–like everyone else, as they should be. If someone wants to be closeted, it’s their responsibility, in NYC, to build their own closet.

    What I’m wondering, however, is whether Jason is actually upset about this so-called outing? Beyond the unconfirmed Jezebel bit, has anyone actually seen him pitching a hissy fit, or is it all just conjecture? If it’s much ado about nothing, the jokes and attention is probably far more embarrassing than the alleged outing.

  18. MCnNYC says

    Sorry Bading MORAL of the Story….

    Closets Kill people.

    And if Wu’s extended family feels that he has brought shame on the Wu name he should just say FU@K WU!!

  19. TANK says

    Tsk tsk biscuits…Bading bading bading… No one disputes that cultural awareness may help with the effectiveness of promoting what’s right in certain cultures irrespective of their views on what is right (I don’t particularly care of, for example, clitoridectomy is considered right by certain interpretations of Islam…it is wrong…end of discussion). Taking advantage of certain memes, traditions, and beliefs to SELL the ethical choice to them. However, this is a different tune than what you were blatently promoting in the first entry, being that respect of cultural homophobia should be the overriding concern.

    If, however, you’d like to debate the merits and ethics of the closet period, which you seem to be angling for–in this particular situation, let’s do that. Focus, grasshopper. In this case a particularly effeminate man outed himself to the new york times without expressing any concern that he’d prefer to remain closeted. His family is either deeply deluded for whatever reason or reasons, or they knew he, at least, gay. I opt for the latter, as it makes much more sense. If he were concerned, then he should have expressed that to the NYT. This later complaint seems to be of a circumstance for which he is entirely culpable for not practicing discretion in, it seems…any aspect of his life with regard to his homosexuality.

  20. TANK says

    Further, the closet is only justified in extreme circumstances where the potential for harm is not only an afterthought or embarrassment, but nigh a certainty. This because of what it represents and the actual harm it perpetuates to more than just, in a specific case, the harm it causes to those proximate to it–but again, those, too. In this case, his family ties MAY (and oh brother…that’s a mighty big assumption) be temporarily strained, but he won’t be rendered homeless and forced into survival sex as a result of this outing. Mere convenience and avoidance of discomfort does not, itself, justify the closet.

  21. adam says

    The most interesting thing about this is that we never heard the story from Jason Wu’s side. All we heard was “allegedly” Wu complaint about the “outing”.

    Clearly, some jealous queens can’t stand Wu’s overnight fame and try to blackmail him. It’s a pity. It’s really shallow and it’s really bad journalism. It’s stunning that so many bitching queens are making such scathing comments, while it make little or no diffence from the hate crime that straight people put on us.

    Or are gay americans just generally shallow and self-hating under the puritan suppression?

  22. justcurious says

    @tank: “Further, the closet is only justified in extreme circumstances…”

    What is your opinion on high school administrators outing students?

    What is your opinion on high school students outing their classmates?

  23. TANK says

    An action’s ethical value is determined solely by its consequences, and specifically the number of preferences it does, in fact, satisfy.

    As a general precept, the only one who has an ethical claim to outing one is oneself. There are obviously counterexamples, and that’s why it’s a general precept.

    However, there is a responsibility that comes with being closeted to family or everyone. Simply saying it’s the closetee’s business doesn’t really capture the truth of a ones whom he has saddled that information with in trust; it’s their business now, too. And it is his responsibility to insure that he informs them that he’d like it to stay that way. If he is remiss in sufficiently conveying it to them, and they out him, they are justified insofar as the harm it does cause is negligible–as in the case of a successful fashion designer. If they act in ignorance and the harm is more than negligible, both they and the closet case are at fault. The ones whom he has entrusted with that secret are also ethically bound to not reveal it given the potential for harm to the individual and others that they can foresee–which makes outing in malice just plain wrong if it serves no greater purpose than to harm the one in the closet. The NYT was justified, as Wu did not fulfill his responsibility, and the alleged harm was not even quality of life threatening given the information available to put through the metric.

    A school administrator hasn’t the option of outing a student who likely is both financially and legally dependent upon his or her guardians, and in which there is good reason to suspect that harm would accrue to that person given homophobia amongst peer groups, teachers, parents, etc. The same applies to students. But this needn’t apply to all people as there’s a big difference in social position between a forty year old closet case with a wife and kids and a high schooler terrified of being disowned and beaten up. Both of whom have a claim to their secret, but the potential for harm obviously differs. I think you’re referencing a specific case that I, too, am familiar.

  24. justcurious says

    @tank: thanks for your response. your thoughts on “the closet” are more nuanced than i originally interpreted them to be.

    as i mentioned earlier, i have doubts about this rumor…

    Statement from NY Times Style editor Trip Gabriel: “During his reporting, Eric Wilson asked both Wu and his partner, Gustavo Rangel, if it was okay to mention in print that they were a couple. They both consented.”

Leave A Reply