JoeyWoww: Confessions of a Social Media Socialite
“I was very naive in every way when it came to everything bisexual. I even had my own stereotypes of gay people etc. which, of course I didn’t like”.
Never to live life quietly, JoeyWoww has tried just about everything.. from modelling to TV to creating his own clothes brand. Eager to please and make friends he has gained a good following which he says inspires his dream to make it big. We first stumbled upon him on twitter, a platform he cites as being instrumental in his understanding of unconditional acceptance:
“I’ve had twitter (@JoeyWoww) on and off for about 2 years. I was ‘straight’ when I got it. What inspired me was the amount of the ‘gay’ audience I had. Day after day I’d have mentions from guys being genuinely nice and thoughtful and interested in the things I had to say. I wouldn’t say I was a homophobe, but I definately didn’t understand the whole thing. I’m not saying I havent always been bisexual, but I wasn’t attracted to any guys before that. Even when I was, it was more of an emotional attachment at first, then a full blown sexual attraction. Either way, when I ‘came out’ I was amazed at how nice everyone was. My twitter followers mean everything to me and I appreciate all of the support I’ve ever had.
So.. big question. Who is my LGBT ICON?
It’s you guys”.
“Coming to terms with the fact of being LGBT is pretty hard for anyone. For me, the acceptance was already there. It was the society that we live in today that was scary. The thought of telling my family that I was actually bisexual, was questionable to say the least, but fortunately, it was fine, and my family are great. What I did struggle with though, was the very little I knew about the LGBT community…
I was very naive in every way when it came to everything bisexual. I even had my own stereotypes of gay people etc. which, of course I didn’t like. I wasn’t aware of the dangers of unprotected sex (HIV etc.) and generally lived life how I wanted too.
That was until I started watching both versions of ‘Queer as Folk’.. truly an amazing series. It provided information on every single subject you can think of in the LGBT world, and I learnt a lot… I mean a lot. I think it’s such a shame that the series has ended, would be great for a reboot as I think, as well as being a well written show it would help the new generation learn about sexuality and maybe defeat some stereotypes people may have about the community”.
We’re sure that by now, we don’t have to tell you that the makers of Queer as Folk changed UK and American culture and opened the gates to a flood of fully developed LGBT characters on television. There was virtually nothing gay on American television before QAF, and even with the onslaught of “gay” shows, the characters on those shows take more cliché roles, or are presented as token, only present to lure a gay audience seeking representation in the media. On being asked what are he is most proud of having been part of a culturally significant show, Hal Sparks (Michael in Queer As Folk USA) said:
“I think the portrayal of the Ben and Michael relationship as a [HIV] positive/negative couple, because that was the first time that was ever on television in America. It was the first time I ever remember it being in anything available to mainstream America. And then dealing with the issue of adopting kids too. And I think because the Michael character and the Ben character were the kind of people that you might know from the office, there was nothing extraordinary about their personality that would immediately peg them as gay, and so it was an easy crossover for a lot of the straight audience to understand it and get it. I catch a lot of shit for constantly reminding people that I’m straight, but that’s just how my life is. My life will remind you that I’m straight. The same way that Harvey Fierstein’s will remind you that he’s gay. You know what I mean–it’s just who you are.
I really honestly have to say that sexuality is not a choice. But one of the reasons why I think it’s healthy to constantly remind people is because the vast majority of straight people think gay is contagious. They think it’s either a bad choice, an immoral choice, or they think it’s something you catch, and that’s where their biggest fear comes from. Homophobia is largely rooted in the fear that you may become it yourself, or that it will take you over without your consent. I’ve been closer to it than probably any straight guy in the history of entertainment and in the end if I’m still myself; I’m still straight; I’m still me; then maybe that takes a bit of the fear away for those people. And they go, ‘It didn’t turn him gay, so maybe it’s not a lifestyle, maybe it is genetic or a choice a spirit makes before it enters the body on a metaphysical level,’ or whatever you wanna call it. ‘Maybe it is a birth right as opposed to something my religious book tells me based on ignorance.”
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