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PREACH IT! Are there more Ricky Martins out there? We could tell you -- but then we'd have to kill you

Ricky martin smiling Call it the shocker that wasn’t: This week, Latin singing sensation Ricky Martin came out of the world’s most transparent closet, announcing on his official website that he is a “fortunate homosexual man.”

There was a loud reaction, and it was a reaction in two parts. The first part came from sanctimonious hausfraus, who clapped and cried and praised the singer for his “bravery.” (Martin sure would have been brave if he’d come out before he made all his money.)

The second part of the reaction was more like a collective Hey Wait a Minute.

Hey! Wait a minute! How come the press never told us this before? We know exactly where and when Lindsay Lohan went to rehab, and almost the precise nanosecond when LeAnn Rimes started cheating on Dean Sheremet with Eddie Cibrian, and who was on the guest list for Amy Adams’ baby shower, but Ricky Martin has been famous and gay for, like, decades? And nary a single press expose?

The press silence on The Gay may seem odd to civilian gossip hounds, especially given how aggressive the tabloids are about every other aspect of Hollywood's personal lives. But there’s a reason: the law.

Ricky martin singing Libel law outlines specific allegations that can trigger a defamation lawsuit, and -- antiquated or not, the argument could be made -- homosexuality is on the list. So is drug use, which is why so many celebrity-addiction rumors are reduced to blind items in the gossip rags. So what does all that mean? It means that, yes, a news outlet could run a story saying So-and-So is a closeted gay person. But most news outlets simply don't want to deal with the legal risk that comes with an allegation of being gay, even if it's true.

Does that mean that celebrity reporters are keeping a lid on many, many more gay relationships in Hollywood? Yes, yes, it does.

And don’t bother to ask. Our lawyers are watching.

-- Leslie Gornstein

Photos: Ricky Martin performs in Mexico City, top left, on May 17, 2008, and at the Los Angeles Coliseum, right, on July 29, 2006. Credits: Miguel Tovar / Associated Press, top; Chris Polk / Associated Press, right. 

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Comments () | Archives (7)

why Leslie you tease!

Im very happy for Ricky. Im sure it is a weight off his shoulders and his heart. I hope that he will find more love than hate, and more acceptance than ignorance. Enjoy the rest of your beautiful life Ricky free of secrets forced upon you.

Christie D'Zurilla here from the blog, with a thought: At the bottom of a post explaining the laws involved in publishing reports about which celebs may or may not be gay, do you *really* think we're going to publish name-laden comments speculating about who may or may not be gay?

No, we didn't think you thought that.

//cdz

too bad you didn't publish...sigh!...where's you're gaydar girl!

Whether to publish or not?

Ricky said it best: I just am not ready to discuss that, and it's really not something I should have to discuss.

For the same reason I didn't need to know what my parents did in the bedroom, I don't need to know what other people, gay or straight, are doing in their bedroom.

When an individual decides to identify as gay as a social statement, then it is okay to publish. Ricky decided on his own terms, and I admire him.

At least he didn't lie about it or make hypocritical public statements.

While I agree somewhat with the article, I disagree with it more. When Adam Lambert and Clay Aiken came out, they paved the way for other celebs, who now can rightly feel they can come out without risking their careers too much. As a gay man who was closeted for years, I think it is a wonderful improvement. I can now acknowledge my partner to colleagues and live life as a real person who doesn't have to make up stories.I hope other people of note will do so, and forever erase the stigma of being gay. We didn't ask to be that way, and would finally like to be considered "normal."

Geez, could this guy be any less interesting? His comments, even his 'coming out' release, are easily the stupidest things ever uttered. The twins have 'a glow'? Yikes.


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