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New Kid on the Block Jonathan Knight's Ex-Boyfriend: He's Gay


Looks as though that birthday boy kiss Donnie Wahlberg gave him a few weeks ago was something to which Knight was accustomed.

Matt Rettenmund at Boy Culture writes: "Kyle Wilker, 27, tells the rag Jonathan realized he 'preferred guys to girls' after dating Tiffany. (Sorry, Tiff. Ouch.) 'We had a wonderful relationship. I was in love with him and I believe he was in love with me.' They met at a bar Kyle was working at on Fire Island...there are so many hints in that sentence that this would end, and then end up in the Enquirer."

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  1. It's rubbish to suggest that just because one is in the public eye (even by choice), one forfeits all right to privacy and those who expose embarrassing details of one's life are completely recused of any ethical culpability. You know, this is a peculiar american attitude, and is unfortunately reflected in our privacy laws. There is no good argument for it.

    Posted by: TANK | Feb 5, 2009 7:25:27 PM

  2. "Celebrities shouldn't be obligated to reveal more about themselves than they wish, but the people around them shouldn't be obligated to protect their closet, either."

    Ernie, I totally agree. I've been conflicted about outing public figures (entertainers, politicians, etc.) forever, but I think this is a happy medium that I can be comfortable with.
    But the ex is a slimeball for selling his ex bf's story; just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. Must have been love, huh?

    Posted by: MannyM | Feb 5, 2009 7:57:07 PM

  3. "Celebrities shouldn't be obligated to reveal more about themselves than they wish, but the people around them shouldn't be obligated to protect their closet, either."

    Ernie, I totally agree. I've been conflicted about outing public figures (entertainers, politicians, etc.) forever, but I think this is a happy medium that I can be comfortable with.
    But the ex is a slimeball for selling his ex bf's story; just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. Must have been love, huh?

    Posted by: MannyM | Feb 5, 2009 7:58:22 PM

  4. One of my oldest friends dated Jonathan for years. They are still very good friends. Jonathan has always been a very sweet guy during and after the relationship. He doesn't like being in the spot light which is why he left it to pursue a life in real estate development.

    Posted by: zeke star | Feb 5, 2009 9:33:40 PM

  5. As with so many 'moral issues', right or wrong is a matter of opinion. What is always true is that there is the reality of consequences.

    I've always seen outing in this context--reality. The reality is that any gay person who sticks his/her nose out of the closet-- anything from posting anonymously on a website (you've left your internet address behind) to tattooing 'homosexual' on their foreheads-- runs the risk of the consequences of being known or thought of as a homosexual. A secret told is no longer a secret. The consequences can range from a parade to murder-- depending on who and where you are. And any gay person who lives an out and proud life takes the chance of severe retribution-- or be overloaded with joy, as I was at my wedding, surrounded by my loved ones. If you are a soldier you can lose your job and career, or like poor Barry Winchell, your life.

    But the point is--again-- that if you choose to take even one step beyond saying to yourself "I am gay", where someone else knows it as well, then oyu invite consequences. No one "deserves" protection from those consequences, because we all must share them. If you are not intrested in consequences, then never, never take that step, and you'll be safe.

    There are two sets of consequences being discussed here. The first are the consequences for being homosexual. Straight people who hate gay people, and more importantly, wanna-be-straight-but-ain't's, have set up those consequences wherever possible to be negative. Therefore, neither the haters nor gay people with a shred of inteeligence should be surprised if those consequences ensue. Nor are they allowed to avoid those consequences, because they are responsible, as are all of us, for their actions. To say that they deserve a break from those consequences would be self serving of them, to say the least, and is an argument against the validity of the disapproval and sanctions to begin with. "You should be punished, but I shouldn't be, because I am on the side of right, except when I'm on my knees." This does not cut it as a defense or an excuse.

    The second set of consequences are the consequences of hypocrisy. These can range from public disgrace to laudatory hymns of praise. (Good Paulk. Who's a good Paulk-Waulky boy?) These consequences also depend on who and where you are. Thus, Wide Stance Larry suffered a lot of public embarrassment, but he stayed in the senate, and Vitter is still there. Such is its privilege. Ted Haggard, on the other hand, you might say, believed his own press (I'm God's right-hand man) and bit the balls he was licking-- always a mistake when someone's foot is in your groin. Christians really only like the kind of hypocrisy that allows them to maintain their myths of moral and spiritual superiority. (Even the apologies for slavery contained a subtle bid for reasserting moral superiority-- we used to think that but now we're even better than before-- and when it comes to the fags, we finally have it right). The kind of hypocrisy that reveals them to be no better than anyone else-- and in my opinion, in some ways, quite a bit worse-- is really not going to be tolerated.

    So, to me, to argue against the morality of outing is to make a moral question where there really isn't one. It is simply a matter of the consequences which other people have set in motion. (It is yet another example of my thesis that straight people behave badly, and then gay people either get the blame or the punishment. When they out people it is good, when we out people, it is bad). But if you are going to argue against outing as immoral, then it is entirely hypocritical unless you are willing to tackle the initial immorality-- the fear, hatred, and persecution of gay people. Because that is where the actual roots of the problem lie. If you don't attack the roots, the weeds still sprout in the garden.

    Posted by: Ben in Oakland | Feb 5, 2009 10:36:40 PM

  6. Great Jon!

    I think his hiding led to his intense social anxiety. I remember when he was Oprah discussing it. Read the excerpt from a study below on how hiding your sexuality creates stress:

    Concealable Stigma and the Distinction between Public and Private Selves

    The present research uses a self-categorization task to investigate whether the possession of a
    concealable stigma influences the extent to which individuals experience distinct public and
    private selves. Study 1 reveals that gay males, especially those who conceal their gay identity at
    work, are faster at distinguishing the traits of their work and home selves than are non-gay males.
    Study 2 replicates the difference between gay and non-gay males controlling for general
    response latency differences. Study 2 also finds that the magnitude of the distinction between
    work and home selves is related to higher work-related stress. Study 3 extends these findings to
    students managing a religious identity at college. Together, these results suggest that concealing
    a stigmatized identity in public leads to a more marked distinction between public and private
    selves. Moreover, this work provides a methodological and theoretical framework to integrate
    research on self-schemas and the experience of stigma.

    Posted by: Bill | Feb 6, 2009 12:47:07 AM

  7. >I always thought (hoped?) that Jordan was the gay New Kid.<

    Rumor has it he's bi.

    Posted by: LostBoy68 | Feb 6, 2009 2:42:26 AM

  8. "We should certainly be sensitive to people who are vulnerable (the young, people who could get fired, etc.) "

    er, it's against the law in most western countries to be fired from a job due to sexuality, much like it's illegal to be fired for your race or gender. Isn't that what Harvey Milk fought for?

    Posted by: Glenn | Feb 6, 2009 7:27:48 AM

  9. Damn, I agree with Rob above-- my fave New Kid was Jordan I always suspected/hoped he was the gay one. Oh well.

    Posted by: Derek Pearce | Feb 8, 2009 9:45:53 AM

  10. Actually, GLENN (since you quoted my comment about sensitivity--which wasn't the main point of my original post), it's NOT against the law to be fired for your sexuality in much of the US. Things have improved, yes, but until we have ENDA, LGBT employees are at the mercy of state laws and their employers. Then there's the military--outed and you're out. There are also instances where outing someone could be dangerous--harassment on the job, or in high school. So, while ideally everyone should be out and proud and honoring what Milk stood for, that isn't always possible.

    That said, there are many people who could be out but aren't because they're cowards, including people who have chosen to be in the public eye and shouldn't expect others to maintain their closets. Celebrity outers often have less than classy motives, but it's past the time when outing should be seen as a shameful smear. I hope Jonathan is ultimately freed by this.

    Posted by: Ernie | Feb 8, 2009 10:22:58 AM

  11. I dont have any problems with Jon knight being gay. I think its actually kInda cool. Being truthful to your self is more important than what ever any other people say. I have speicial needs like ADHD, ODD, Bipolar and people call me retarted. That is thier opinion. If thats what they see me as, fine. I could care less what they think. They don't know my background or about my personallity. I know I am a very good person and a heck of a great friend. No one knows me like I kno me. I am proud of Jonathan for knowing who he is and being true to himself. By finding this out has made me a bigger fan of his. I am proud to be a fan of jons. He has a sexy voice. YOU GO JON JON! and if anyone says somthing about your apperance they are just jelious of you. I LOVE YOU JON!

    Posted by: Alex | Feb 20, 2009 4:52:47 PM

  12. I never knew he was a queer. WOW!

    Posted by: Tim Reynolds | May 11, 2009 2:14:18 PM

  13. Unless it is Jon himself that publicly states he is gay I don't buy it! Funny I have been a fan of NKOTB since the 80's and back then the gay rumors were heard everywhere. It was Jordan who was gay. The questionable ex suddenly being they reunited decides to sell a story for $8,000 yeah ok. Sorry I don't believe for 1 min he is gay or bi sexual! If he was that is his business and I still love him, but these rumors are 20 yrs old and never seem to stop! As for the pics Jon is very private he was pretty much confined in his house most of the time so yeah he is hanging at a bar and making out nah don't believe it! Sorry! Can u say so easily photo shopped! There are rumors and there is truth and sometimes while some are open about their sexual preferences others can be destroyed and hurt by what some are comfortable in doing. If he is gay or bi I will only believe it from his mouth and not the tabloids!

    Posted by: TAMEE | Jun 16, 2009 5:58:18 PM

  14. He's been out for 20 years! So inquiring minds should have already known!

    Posted by: IQ | Nov 18, 2011 7:56:12 AM

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