1. Stranded says

    I don’t like what the guy has done and I don’t like his approach to the subject either. At first I thought it was hilarious that he got arrested but after watching that second video and realizing it was a real mental breakdown, I felt bad for him.

    I don’t think we are in a position to judge his sexuality from a 45 second video. He was clearly out of his mind and I doubt this has anything to do with whatever feelings he may or may not be keeping inside. People have done worse while being drunk or under the influence and this clearly wasn’t him.

    I don’t believe in anyone who claims to have a “gaydar”, because it’s the same as claiming that you can read minds. Judging anyone on their mannerisms makes only for shallow assumptions.

  2. Hal says

    Gaydar does exist. And this is hardly a borderline case. He’s not just gay, he’s really, really gay.

    Also, I find him really hot. And yes, I do hate myself for it.

  3. says

    Has the IBT never read a comments section before? Wait until they discover YouTube … and I thought gays were over meth meltdowns anyway. Sooo retro 90s. The cabaret critic needs to update her spectacles.

  4. gr8guyca says

    This is a good lesson for anyone who seeks the limelight – whether it be Herman Cain or Jason Russell. Once the white-hot glare of the media spotlight hits, one never knows what will be uncovered. Perhaps, it is an example of, “pride goeth before the fall.”

    That said, while I hate to be superficial and judgmental, the guy’s mannerisms and behavior scream, “gay.” My gaydar – I hate that word – went off when I first saw him on the air. I am one of those who Googled, “Jason Russell gay.” And after watching the close-up view of his street behavior, I mean….c’mon.

    On a larger level, it seems tragic that someone who started with good intentions – trying to get rid of a person on the ICC (International Criminal Court) most wanted list – has now become the object of media attention himself. It’s a distraction from the good that was intended.

  5. uffda says

    This is painful – the closeup video and the other. Ya, he’s probably gay, and closeted, but so what? He’s lost it and the first full day of comments about his breakdown, (Saturday?) showed most of the readership here to be as cruel and condemning as any collection of outright bigots could be. So much for the “enlightened” and oppressed. We deserve what we get when we give the same.

  6. Brice says

    I’d like to put my two cents in here. I actually worked for the organization several years ago, and know it to be full of compassionate and loving people, both straight and gay. As to where Jason falls on that line, I cannot speak, but I know him to be a committed father and an absolutely tireless advocate for bringing Joseph Kony to justice and peace to the region. This quality is nothing new.

    All I ask is that we suspend judging his purported sexuality for a moment and focus on the fact that he basically drove himself mad trying to stop the LRA. No doubt his antics were certifiably crazy, but I can attest to the fact that he is not an addict or a heavy drinker. I honestly believe he had a mental collapse. Let’s not forget that his fame stems from a desire to help people living in Central Africa who have been terrorized by a rebel group for more than 25 years. Please focus upon the positive message and allow him the privacy and time he needs to recover.

  7. Marcito says

    Jason Russell had a “meltdown” in public & (social) media, going instantly viral. A psychotic episode is no joke & probably brought about from compounded stress, sleep deprivation, and maybe in Russell’s case, a little hypomanic. He loved his new media stardom & wanted IC be the “Pixar of human rights stories.” His words.

    Is he suppressing his sexuality, too? I don’t know that or know him. His journey back to health will be his chance to get it right.

  8. says

    I’m not as concerned with his politics as I am with his well being. It was obvious to me he was having a mental breakdown. If you’ve never seen someone mentally “lose it” then take the TMZ video as your introduction.

    I say this because I have lived downtown San Francisco (Russian Hill) all of my life and there have always been those people ‘oft-kilter’ that many would believe were high on drugs or alcohol when, in fact, they were simply mentally off-balance from the stress (no matter the what the cause) of their own lives.

    When I was 12, months after my mom died, I found life really sad/grey. Finding a reason to get up and face the day was not easy and I cried all the time. One morning I couldn’t stop rubbing my palms together because these little white bumps itched. It wasn’t a parasite or allergy it was hives and the result of stress. Stress from the inability to deal with the loss of the person I held most dear in my life. My dad was wise enough to get me to a therapist and once I understood, I came to terms with the loss and my life get brighter and happier.

    Jason Russell does not fit the pattern of just being an ass and running around naked in a “see me, touch me” egocentric way. The video clearly shows an individual who has stepped out of reality and can’t find his way back. And for that we should offer a hand because no one, ever, wants to be at that point in life. Life is just too precious.

  9. No kidding says

    Totally gay. Breakdown caused by pretending to be straight in a marriage that gets harder and harder to perform in day after day because he can’t get it hard enough anymore. Common story. Sad.

  10. Booka says

    Two things immediately thing went through my head the second i saw the video: #1, Meth. #2 he is Gay. I do not know much about this guy, though I believe he has been hugely responsible for a lot of good, with all the work he has done. Thats great, I wish him only the best with all he does. However, I will continue to trust my instinct (or ‘Gaydar’)in regard to his “Melt-down”.

  11. Brian in Texas says

    Wow. My only hope is that he gets the help he needs and comes out on the other side a well adjusted and honest man whether he is gay or straight. Although my gaydar is pinging HIGH!. Some people are just not ready for the limelight.

  12. Mario says

    I’d hit that in a NY second! He’s smoking hot, regardless of his religious affiliation, his wife & kids, his penchant for psychotropic drugs, etc. Yummy.

  13. SoLeftImRight says

    Totally anecdotal, but the first time I saw him interviewed about this whole Kony campaign, I instantly thought, wow, he’s gay…only for him to emphasize his wife. “Huh?” was my reaction. Beyond the point that the whole effort is questionable in its tactics, then the allegations of fundie involvement, and I realized it all fit together. Closet case, religion, white-man’s burden approach to African problems, seen it all before…

  14. Alex says

    It’s great to see gays using stereotypes to attack someone.

    Also, very impressed how people take someone suffering from an obvious psychotic or manic episode and turn that into repressed sexuality.

    Other than being a Christian, can anyone point to Russell having said or done anything homophobic? I’ve seen nothing.

    Instead of having compassion for someone who is obviously mentally ill, people are lashing out at him.

    How many kids are bullied because they seem different and are labeled to suit the insecurities of others? Isn’t that what some of you are doing? Gay people talk a good game about being accepting and non-judgmental about non-gender conforming individuals but when confronted with someone who is different, many of you are quick to draw conclusions. Sad.

  15. Hollywood, CA says

    @Alex – Take it down a notch, most of the comments are not “attacks” on this closet case. An attack would be if the comments were about Newt, or someone else straight.

    And, being a Christian doesn’t make you homophobic. And gay people can be judgmental and snarky? Have you seen RuPaul’s Untucked?! =)

  16. StevyD says

    Cute, naked and masturbation, all while in the middle of a public intersection. Sounds like Up Your Alley (Dore Alley) St. Fair in San Fran. material to me. Hmm, I can see him in a black leather harness. Whip that beoch. But still, not another Slick-It-Up, latex licking, yet Mo repressed Saint. My God they’re popping out everywhere (like zombies only ALIVE!)

  17. Michael says

    First off, yeah he’s totally gay. To accuse the LGBT of ‘stereotyping’ is just crap. Every stereotype holds some truth and this guy is a huge stereotype of a closeted man.

    More importantly, has he ever said or done anything homophobic? If not, we need to back off. If so, slam dunk him.

  18. Brian M says

    And this would be the reason I hang out with very few gay men. What a bunch of bitchy, judgmental queens. Who gives a fat rats ass if he is gay or not. It would be different if it was someone like “Benedict” Mehlman who actively worked against us or any number of closeted Repugnants. But all this guy tried to do was bring attention to the atrocities that Kony had wrought and everyone jumps on him like a pack of wolves on a lone sheep. Get out and do something meaningful with your lives rather than setting around trying to ascertain to what degree your gaydar was registering. Leave the “outing” and pettiness to h8trsexuals.

  19. sparks says

    This is just the sad result of religion pressuring a gay man to suppress his sexuality and construct a hetero life.

    And while my first instinct was to pity the supportive wife who will be affected most by his inevitable coming out, I *have* to think: “SURELY she knows he is really gay, and exploited religion and his identity confusion to have a pretty husband who isn’t going to be chasing other girls…”

    I’ve known more than a few wifes-of-gay-men and every one has either been in severe denial (believing their husband has converted from homosexuality), or was obviously aware of his orientation but using him for one reason or another.

  20. FunMe says

    In the link below there are one person’s comments that make me lean toward Jason being a repressed gay and doing crystal meth to deal with it.

    “I went to high school with Jason in a redneck suburb of San Diego and was a brief member of his parent’s Christian Youth Theater, a breeding ground for closet gays. Everyone remembers the most flaming guy from high school. That was Jason. When he ran for student body president his slogan was “hustle, hustle, vote for Russell.” Enough said?

    And to add, understand that his parents’ creepy fun-house theater comprises his whole social/support network. That bff he calls his wife, all his friends, etc are all cultish and anti-gay. Friends of friends all tell me people in his family have had problems with meth, as a shining example of why our hometown was once voted meth capital of the world by whom I’m not sure. Our consensus on why this happened is obvious: he’s a gay tweaker. Meth exaggerates behavior so any gay tendencies tend to come out, so to speak. BTW I don’t hate gays or Christians just liars and phonies.”

    AND of course the article quote somone from Russell’s inner circule saying:

    “one of the board members is so in denial they all are standing by the dehydration & stress story…. she actually suggested it was “sick” for saying it could be anything more… i told her out of compassion that if they continue to treat him with gatoraid lol & prayer hes likely to end up in a bad situation… as in he needs mental health care & or drug intervention because lets fact it that was no act of dehydration malnutrition and stress… i was diagnosed when i came back from xxxxxx dehydrated & mal nurished i had enlarged liver because of this & my mind was in no way altered like his was in the video… i honestly believe hes closet gay & its that secret thats eating him up & i truly fear for his life… mental or drugs whatever mixed with that kind of inner turmoil is a recipe for suicide or other harmful behavior.’ “

    PS San Diego was the meth capital of the world!?

  21. jason says

    I think it’s homophobic to accuse Jason Russell of being gay simply because of his flame-out. It suggests homophobia on the part of the observer.

  22. Lisa Kelsey says

    Accusing people of stereotyping in this case is like claiming that a black person usually has dark skin is a stereotype. The fact that there are “black” people with very light skin does not make the previous statement false. I haven’t seen any evidence that Russell is homophobic, but that is beside the point. The tragedy here is that he felt the need to construct a false self to fit in the world he grew up in. I agree his breakdown seems to have been caused by the shattering of this constructed self. I pity him.

  23. uffda says

    Anyone know how Jason is now,how he’s doing? He needs attention and love and I would love to send same to him and his organization which is, after all, trying to do some good in the world.

    Happily many of these posts now have shown some of the level of compassion this man deserved immediately at first notice of his breakdown. Others continue to demonstrate why I, also, like BRIAN M above, find few reasons to spend time with gay men. Homophobic? Not at all. Homoemetic would be closer.

  24. elg/edwin says

    How is it necessarily homophobic or bad to say that Jason Russell has stereotypical gay mannerisms? His mannerisms ARE gay! It’s pretty obvious.

    Jason did an extraordinary thing by exposing the African thug, Kony. Jason is a hero and I hope he gets the help he needs.

    BTW, I agree with those who say he’s a very
    good looking man. Yes, I’m superficial – sometimes.

  25. Dback says

    Dehydrated and “exhausted” people don’t bang their heads on the pavement (while naked, no less). That implies a psychotic/emotional breakdown or a drug-induced freakout. (My sister is bipolar, I’ve seen her lose it under both circumstances.) Definitely seems like the pressure and scrutiny of the past few weeks on him and his personal life combined with possibly some sort of stimulant (if he’s been running on 3-4 hours of sleep a night for several days’ running)–take one too many or combine with alcohol, and all of a sudden you’re in Judy Garland territory. (She turned up at a friend’s house in her early-20’s MGM days one night, laid down on the couch, and started screaming uncontrollably for several minutes; she paused and asked “Do you believe me?” and then went back to screaming again for an hour or more before finally falling asleep. The parallels to Russell’s breakdown are obvious.)

  26. Bill says

    Don’t know what he is, don’t care. Hope he gets help … but yes, that breakdown/rant appeared waaay gay indeed. Suppressing one’s God given sexuality does have this unfortunate habit of coming back to bite one in the closeted-evangelical-Republican butt.

  27. Caliban says

    Exhaustion and dehydration don’t cause someone to get naked and “work” the sidewalk like a b*tch-diva drag queen. Let’s get that clear right now. Based on things I’ve witnessed meth or bipolar illness will, however. Not that those are the only two possibilities but they’re the most obvious.

    As for whether Jason Russell is homophobic, the Kony2012 group has ties to Focus On The Family and he has spoken at Liberty University, both of which are Religious Right organizations and homophobic in the extreme. If he was speaking to White Power groups and allied himself with them would anyone have any compunction about saying he was racist? No.

    All I can say about his sexuality is that he certainly has many of the mannerisms and vocal inflections that are stereotyped as gay, not without cause. We also know the Religious Right pushes the gay people in their rank to repress their sexuality and it does have negative consequences on their mental health.

  28. Apparatus says

    The first time I ever even heard of him was on MSNBC where he was interviewed, and I immediately was like, “Oh, a gay guy is leading this 90 million views KONY campaign? Good for us!” Then he mentioned his kid, and I figured maybe he just had a kid with his partner, nothing wrong with that. Then he mentioned his wife, and my brain just about exploded.

    He is gay, Gay, GAY. He has clearly been trapped in this horrible closet all of his life, and probably cracked from being thrust into the spotlight so fast and furious while still having to deny who he is.

    Come out of the closet, man! And then repent for all the damage you’ve done working with all those anti-gay fundie groups with nice names and good PR but evil messages, and start fighting the good fight instead.

  29. Rin says

    I won’t post an offlink because that would be rude, but I’m putting my tinfoil hat on right now and stating that…

    1)Kony was at its worst a decade ago.
    2)Oil rights are up for grabs in this area.
    3)The video was too put together with symbolism.
    4)Look at supporters (Bush, Obama, Gates)

    When people started questioning the organization he has a meltdown that is so discrediting and takes the spotlight away from the organization and onto him.

    Whether he’s gay and in denial…whatever. Maybe. I think this organization got a boost from TPTB because we’re looking for an excuse to INCREASE military advisors (read the letter Kony2012 sent out) INCREASE US goverment’s economic “assistance” etc.

    By getting people to send that letter on without reading it they were basically getting the people to give our president their approval to send in troops, secure the region and set up economic stabilizers.

    No wonder he’s beating his head against the concrete.

  30. says

    Source: ‘Jason Russell’s public meltdown wasn’t so much precedented by his failure to own up to his sexuality or because he was sleep deprived (please give us a break) but the fact that the entity he is involved with, Invisible Children, is backed by anti gay christian groups which goes against direct intervention of what his consciousness could reasonably handle before imploding.’

  31. Henry Holland says

    Rin | Mar 21, 2012 2:07:16 PM

    Great post! I don’t care about his meltdown, but his group is involved with some very nasty anti-gay people and THAT I do care about.

  32. frenke says

    Oh my god, Jason Russell acted sooooooooo gay that I cannot imagine him anything else anymore. Wow, just as flambouyant as he wanna be…what a woman!!! There is no way he was not on drugs…anyone who has done them (which is alot of Americans) know the behavior…perhaps he suffered from exhaustion from using drugs…everyone else does!

  33. James says

    I once worked as a lay person for a well-known and respected Christian charity for six years and I’ve seen first hand what sexual repression can do to people and the twisted behaviors it can lead to. When are people going to learn?

    BYW, I didn’t have the heart to watch the naked rant video, or whatever they’re calling it. Out of curiosity, I looked at some interview footage of Mr. Russell and I gotta tell ya, my gaydar flew right off the charts.

  34. says

    Jason is a very nice guy with a good heart, but it,s his head that I’m worried about. I saw his meltdown on the computer and felt strongly that he is gay – it was just kind of there. Easy to pick up. Rather than have a nervous breakdown, he needs to bring out his inner Dorothy and find himself. I wish him well, but he,s got to find himself if wants to get and stay well.

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