"Now is no longer the time to keep it private."
Daniel Newman, one of the stars of the hit TV series The Walking Dead, came out last night on Twitter followed by a video where he shared his "aha moment."
I'm #OUTandPROUD #LGBT Love you guys. Be proud to be yourself. We need everyone just the way you are! I'll chat with you guys tonight— Daniel Newmaη (@DanielNewman) March 30, 2017
In the video, Newman recalls a conversation he had while volunteering at an LGBT homeless shelter.
A girl at the shelter thanked him for volunteering, especially because he was "straight."
When he told her that he was gay, she said, “Why have you never said that publicly before? You could help change our lives.”
Here's a partial transcript of the video via Towleroad:
“It hit me like a gut punch. It felt like someone had knocked the wind out of me. I realized how important it is in this day and age to be visible; have people know who you are.
"When you are accomplishing incredible things, and you are hiding who you are, you are hurting hundreds of millions of people.
"By us staying quiet, we’re partially to blame for kids getting beat up and ridiculed, stereotypes and stigmas.
"I grew up in an Irish Catholic family, a farm town in Georgia in the South, and it wasn’t even about homophobia or anything; it was about you just keep your private life private. So that’s the way I’ve always been. Now is not the time any longer to keep it private.”
“I’m an actor. The whole world, the industry, is like ‘here’s your big break, you’re on The Walking Dead, you can’t come out, you can’t be in the press, because everything you work so hard for is going to be gone. There’s no gay or bi leading men, no action heroes, your career’s going to be over.’ I don’t care. Because I know what’s right.”
Bravo, Daniel! And thank you!
Watch Newman's poignant coming out video below: