‘Gays have enemies. They lurk in gilded closets.’
Actor Jada Pinkett Smith’s moving speech in a Facebook video calling for the Academy to recognize racial diversity after no Black actors were nominated for an Oscar this week, has been railroaded by Trans actor Alexis Arquette.
The sister of Medium actor Patricia Arquette posted an irate Facebook post calling the actor and her celebrity husband, Will Smith, out for being inauthentic about their sexuality.
The post, which has now been deleted from Arquette’s page, read:
‘When Jada comes out as gay and her beard husband admits his first marriage ended when she walked in to him butt servicing his Sugar Daddy Benny Medina ..then I will listen to them.’
Adding further fuel to the fire, Arquette went on to post in the comments section, alleging Pinkett Smith was paid off to remain silent about her husband’s sexual history.
”She’ being his FIRST Wife. Paid off, silent.’
The Trans actor went on to suggest the stars would be happier if they outed themselves, saying:
‘Gays have enemies. They lurk in gilded closets. Outing is healthy. You are either with or against us. You decide. Today.’
But here’s the thing. Outing, if not done on a person’s own terms, is not healthy. In fact, as Arquette should be well aware being a Trans woman herself, outing someone else before they are ready can be extremely destructive and potentially dangerous.
Additionally, whether the Smiths are gay, straight or otherwise inclined should be their business, and theirs alone. Sexuality is an innately personal issue, and consequently, openly speculating as to someone else’s sexual preferences is a gross violation of that person.
While I agree we need to become more open when it comes to discussing issues related to sexuality in order to prevent repeats of the shocking examples of bigotry that have occurred in the past year, including the banning of a Californian five year-old girl from school for having lesbian parents and the harassment of a same-sex couple on board a Qantas flight, I do not agree with the way Arquette has gone about weighing in.
If the actor truly wants to offer a meaningful contribution to the LGBT discussion, she should do so focusing on her own experiences and role modelling positive acceptance, not exploiting the private lives of her colleagues for her own cause.
The Smiths have not commented on this issue, nor should they. While their unconventional marriage has been a topic of public discussion and dissection for years now, including speculations the pair have agreed to an open relationship, to which Pinkett Smith told Sirius XM radio last year that she trusted her husband, neither confirming nor denying the rumor; the inner workings of their partnership should not qualify as fair game as a default of their celebrity status.
“You’ve got to trust who you’re with. And at the end of the day, I’m not here to be anybody’s watcher. I’m not his watcher. He’s a grown man. Here’s what I trust. I trust that the man that Will is, is the man of integrity. So, he’s got all the freedom in the world. As long as Will can look himself in the mirror and be okay, I’m good,” Pinkett Smith responded.
And shouldn’t that be all that matters, in any relationship, at the end of the day?
I am a huge supporter of the LGBT community, but in this case, sadly, I think Arquette has – perhaps unintentionally – done her community a real disservice by setting the ultimate example of what not to do when it comes to outing. Personally, I couldn’t care less if the Smiths are gay, straight, have an open marriage or attend weekly sex parties. Despite their choice to take on careers in the spotlight, they are still human beings, and at the most basic level, they are entitled – as we all are all – to write the rules as to how they conduct their private sexual relationships, without fear of judgement or condemnation.
Comment: Do you think Arquette’s comments about the Smiths are fair?
Nadia is a journalist, media commentator and editor with a penchant for hoarding makeup and an opinion on just about everything. Her work has been published in The Washington Post, Huffington Post, Thought Catalog, Cosmopolitan, and many more. She's a passionate advocate for destroying mental health stigma and sexually empowering women, and has absolutely no concept of TMI. Follow Nadia on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.