Fox News host Shepard Smith says he has no problems being gay at work
Fox News anchor Shepard Smith has said he has no problems being out as gay at work.
Smith has been at Fox News since 1996 when the channel was formed.
The anchor, who was previously married to a woman, has avoided commenting on his sexuality for years, though he has previously featured in Out Magazine’s Power List and attended a National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association gala.
Speaking at the University of Mississippi, a college at which he is an alumni, he played down any issues at Fox News as an out gay man.
“I don’t think about it,” said Smith, a Mississippi native and an alumnus of the university. “It’s not a thing. I go to work. I manage a lot of people. I cover the news. I deal with holy hell around me. I go home to the man I’m in love with.”
Of how he thought about being gay when he was younger, Smith said: “A. You’re going to hell for it. B. You’ll never have any friends again. C. What are you going to tell your family? And by the way, you’re on television on the craziest conservative network on earth. They will probably put you in front of a brick wall and mow you down. Of course, none of that was true, but that’s how it felt.”
In an interview with the Huffington Post, the anchor quietly confirmed his sexuality, while denying allegations that he was booted out of his prime-time slot by former Fox News president Roger Ailes because he wanted to come out publicly.
Asked if Ailes had ever been homophobic, he said: “No, never. He treated me with respect, just respect.
“I wasn’t new in the business when I came here ― I’d been doing reporting for 12 years ― but I wasn’t old in it either, and he gave me every opportunity in the world and he never asked anything of me but that we get it right, try to get it right every day.
“It was a very warm and loving and comfortable place.”
He added of reports that he was kept in the closet: “That’s not true. He was as nice as he could be to me. I loved him like a father.”
Earlier this week Smith opened up about coming out as gay at the “craziest conservative network”.