It's a relatively new phenomenon, the non-coming out come-out. Gay public figures attend events with same-sex partners, or get spotted shopping with them at Ikea. They never claim to be straight or go on arranged photo-op dates with opposite-sex celebrities, and the stars as well as their fans may even sincerely consider them to be out, or at least…not in.
Inching out of the closet:
* Neil Patrick Harris
* Anderson Cooper
* Jodie Foster
* Adamo Ruggiero
* Sir Ian McKellen
* Chad Allen
* David Hyde Pierce
In short, coming out beats the hell out of inching out. Like most valuable and important things, that contribution isn't always an easy one.
Mentioning the difficulties of navigating the public coming out process, Sir Ian said, "It's very hard and I don't think we should expect people to do anything other than what they can do." Still, he concluded, "We've all got a part to play and it would be quite enough, as far as I'm concerned … to say 'Yes, I'm gay,' and leave it at that."
Far from demanding gay celebrities do more for our community, how about expecting them to do only one thing: Don't inch out; come out. Because that is, in the end, the single most powerful thing anyone can do to support equality.
Source: Inching out of the closet by Christie Keith