“I’m Black. And I’m Gay.”

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More than a few people have questioned, chafed, and commented on Collins’ decision to identify himself as a black gay man — rather than simply as a gay man. And that’s where I step into the ring.

At BuzzFeed, Saeed Jones writes about the importance of race as a factor in NBA player Jason Collins’s coming out.

It’s a personal, stirring expression of gratitude for the role models who help LGBT youth of all races and backgrounds envision themselves as people who matter in a world that acknowledges them.


Lauren O'Neal is an MFA student at San Francisco State University. Her writing has appeared in publications like Slate, The New Inquiry, and The Hairpin. You can follow her on Twitter at @laureneoneal. More from this author →