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Ian McKellen to Anderson Cooper: 'I've Never Met a Gay Person Who's Regretted Coming Out' - VIDEO


Ian McKellen and Anderson Cooper sat down today to talk about The Hobbit, but spent part of the segment talking about being out and proud, and the progress on gay rights in the last 20 years.

Said McKellen, discussing a time when homosexuality was illegal: "I was making love until I was about 30 with my live-in boyfriend and we were breaking the law every time we had sex. Breaking the law. We could have been arrested. All the bad laws have gone. But there's a long way to go."

McKellen then praised Obama for coming out for marriage equality, eliciting a big round of applause from the audience.


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  1. Two of my favourite gays!! :)

    Posted by: Gigi | Dec 14, 2012 11:24:59 AM

  2. I've said it before and I'll say it again. Next to models, actors are the dumbest people on Earth.
    Of course, he doesn't know much outside of his showbiz bubble, like what it must be like to come out in rural Alabama.

    Posted by: Wilberforce | Dec 14, 2012 11:57:53 AM

  3. @Wilberforce

    You can't speak to his experience. Perhaps he hasn't met anyone that regretted coming out. In any case, you're making some sweeping generalizations yourself, about models and actors. First remove the beam from your own eye.

    Posted by: Eric | Dec 14, 2012 12:32:29 PM

  4. My neighbor, who was recently terminated from HUD after 28 years (HUD says it has nothing to do with his being openly gay but throughout the 28 years they never once promoted the guy and he was often subjected to hateful gay language, privately and publicly) tells Greg and myself how very lucky we are to be so young in today's world. He has lost a great many friends to suicide or severe depression (drinking/drugging themselves to death) and says he never believed he would see the day gay people could marry.

    BTW, up until 2005 if you were openly gay and employed within the Federal Government you could be fired JUST for being gay. Your termination papers would read, "Removed for homosexuality". And even tho' Obama has signed an executive order protecting the employment of gay people in Government, the openly gay Federal employee still has little protection because Congress has never approved equal employment rights for gay Federal employees. So instead of firing your for being gay they can trump up a charge and still get rid of you. How sick is that?

    Posted by: OS2Guy | Dec 14, 2012 12:37:01 PM

  5. He is so right. Things are so much better, but there is still along way to go.

    Posted by: Bill Michael | Dec 14, 2012 1:14:45 PM

  6. Love Beads ARE BACK!

    Posted by: Sargon Bighorn | Dec 14, 2012 1:18:36 PM

  7. i've never met a gay person who regretted coming out, either.

    i have met people who resent being gay, and wish they weren't, but that's not the same thing.

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Dec 14, 2012 1:23:41 PM

  8. On the other hand, he did do a good job playing Gandalf, one of my favorite literary characters.

    Posted by: Wilberforce | Dec 14, 2012 2:28:04 PM

  9. Eric,
    I'm generalizing about actors and models? Maybe a tad. I'm sure there are exceptions to the rule.
    But there's a ton of evidence supporting my conclusions. I've known plenty of models; all of them got by on their looks. And actors speak their ignorant nonsense every minute on the TeeVee.
    Where have you been?

    Posted by: Wilberforce | Dec 14, 2012 2:33:03 PM

  10. Whoever states or implies that Sir Ian McKellen is empty headed knows nothing of the man. He has a powerful intellect coupled considerable compassion and courage.

    Posted by: malcanoid | Dec 14, 2012 3:01:47 PM

  11. Calling Sir Ian McKellen "dumb" is ridiculous. He's a Shakespearean, classically trained actor, who read English at Cambridge and who has been a gay activist for the last 30 years (co-founding the biggest gay organisation in the UK, "Stonewall").

    You're the one who's ignorant.

    Posted by: G.I. Joe | Dec 14, 2012 3:20:29 PM


    Where have I been? Working in medical research, where I've learned that anecdotal evidence such as yours regarding actors and models isn't really evidence at all.

    Posted by: Eric | Dec 14, 2012 4:56:29 PM

  13. So right. Real gay people don’t regret coming out. Hatred is in other people’s minds, don’t empower it by adding fear and insecurity. Haters are like carnivores: they smell fear and shame and jump onto the trembling prey. Dispel fear and at the very least you have a chance. Homophobia is as much common inside LGTB as outside, what fear do is make you accord with the haters as a feeble and never successful attempt to dispel danger. Lies are lies even when they are told under the threat of violence if confronted. Some people grew old with a life ruined by fear and so resentment took what is left of them with false notions about reality and they react against their kind as they did against themselves, because unhappiness became king. We are not talking about Iraq or Uganda here by the way.

    Posted by: SayTheTruth | Dec 14, 2012 5:27:31 PM

  14. Anderson Cooper has marinated himself in so much gaydom, he probably feels self-conscious actually having gay sex.

    Posted by: Gary | Dec 14, 2012 11:00:37 PM

  15. What about Rupert Everett?

    Posted by: Gabe R L | Dec 15, 2012 2:58:00 PM

  16. Vote for me in the Gay Travel Guru contest. I need votes! Thanks!

    Posted by: Nate Csthey | Dec 16, 2012 12:17:07 AM

  17. It is not always a positive experience to 'come out, gay men can be very cruel and if you do not look, dress or behave in a certain way you can be ostracised and become terribly lonely.

    Posted by: David R | Jan 2, 2013 3:03:33 PM

  18. David R, that only applies if those people don't understand what Coming Out is actually about.

    It's not about saying "I'm Gay" - it's the first step in no longer living your life to appease and conform to the whims of others.

    don't wanna be "ostracized", as you put it? then apply the same mentality in Living Out as you do in Coming Out - discern and make friendships based on something more than shallow aesthetics.

    if you don't care what anti-gay bigots think you'd do well to remember to not care what shallow people think.

    "look, behave or dress a certain way"?

    Blanche, please.

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Jan 2, 2013 3:15:12 PM

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