Thursday, April 14, 2011

Calling on Bret Easton Ellis to Give Up Homophobia for Lent

From the report in US Magazine online:

As an acclaimed, best-selling author, Bret Easton Ellis should understand the power of the written word.

"I like the idea of Glee, but why is it that every time I watch an episode I feel like I've stepped into a puddle of HIV?" the literary icon asked his nearly 142,000 Twitter followers on Tuesday.

The 47-year-old American Psycho author was then bombarded with criticism for his off-color remark, but instead of apologizing, Ellis continued to fan the flames. "No, I wasn't drunk last night," he tweeted on Wednesday. "I was watching Chris Colfer singing 'Le Jazz Hot' and felt like I had suddenly come down with the hivs."

Golden Globe winner Colfer, 20 -- and the rest of the Glee cast -- have yet to respond to Ellis' comments.

Well, the Glee cast may not have responded yet but we can.

We can respond by demanding the same "zero tolerance" for his homophobic rhetoric on Twitter that Kobe Bryant received for his homophobic rant on the basketball court.

We can send a mobilized message from everyone who cares about ending bullying, stereotyping, the marginalization of LGBT youth and the stigmatizing of those living with HIV that he repent of his unconscionable comments.

Yes, I said "repent." It's a good old-fashioned word that means "a change of thought and action to correct a wrong" -- and what better time to call for repentance that during Lent?

Unlike Kobe Bryant, in Ellis' case there's no NBA Commissioner handing down $100,000 fines but there is a publisher -- Random House -- with a vested interest in the book he has coming out in May. Email them at or send them a message on twitter -- @randomhouse. Let them hear -- loud and clear -- that the days when homophobic rhetoric was tolerated are past and the time when HIV stigmatization was accepted is gone.

And let Bret Easton Ellis hear -- loud and clear -- that his words do have power as we call him to use that power to eradicate rather than exacerbate homophobia.

Speak up. Step out. Go. Do it. Now!

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