North Carolina lawmaker comes out as bisexual after homophobic attack
A state representative in North Carolina has come out as bisexual following a homophobic attack.
Lawmaker Cecil Brockman decided to come out after experiencing an instance of homophobia whilst at a restaurant.
Brockman was having dinner with republican Chris Agro and Agro’s partner Ryan Butler, who were wearing anti-HB2 buttons.
Whilst having dinner, a drunk man approached their table and launched into a “homophobic and obscene tirade, making such a scene the management made him leave.”
The “ugly incident” inspired him to come out publicly as part of his fight to combat homophobia.
Before the incident he was in the closet. “I don’t wear it on my sleeve. I can live in the straight world and not be identified,” he explained.
“It was incredibly frustrating to hear people who have very ignorant opinions,” said Brockman, “because very few of those people know a member of the LGBT community.”
“I really want young people to know that you can be a member of the LGBT community, and it’s OK. You can run for public office and serve honourably. You don’t have to let anyone put you in a box.”
Brockman said deeply affected when House Bill 2 passed in the state and he stood and apologised to the LGBT people of North Carolina, but now he wants to stand with the people.
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The controversial anti-LGBT law prohibits cities and counties within the state from adopting LGBT inclusive policies. It also prevents transgender people from using the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity.
“Discriminating against folks in the LGBT community has become legal,” said Brockman about HB2. “You should be able to be who you are and love who you are and not be afraid to go out and feel like someone will harass you.”
Brockman was inspired to come out because he wants the community to know they have a voice in the General Assembly when Chris Agro leaves the house at the end of the year.
“I always felt that I tried to stick up for the LGBT community, even when I wasn’t ‘out,’
“I want to do more of my part, to be stronger and admit to the world that I’m actually a member of this community as well.”
Before entering his current position Brockman was a campaign manager and aide to Marcus Brandon. Brandon was the first openly gay representative in the N.C. legislature.