Le courage d’un fils
The real example of courage in this story, however, comes from Portman’s son Will, who is twenty-one years old. Will Portman came out to his parents over two years ago. Imagine what it was like to be a Yale freshman (as he was at the time), coming to terms with your sexual orientation and having to come out to your father, one of the most prominent conservative members of the national political party that has historically been identified with opposing the rights of the group to which you now belong. (I remember how it felt to come out as the gay son of a prominent anti-gay psychiatrist.) Then imagine, after sharing this intimate part of yourself with your parents, watching your father be publicly vetted for Vice-President on the ticket of someone whose anti-gay-rights views were being widely reported on. In his Op-Ed, Portman wrote about learning that Will was gay:
He said he’d known for some time, and that his sexual orientation wasn’t something he chose; it was simply a part of who he was. Jane and I were proud of him for his honesty and courage. We were surprised to learn he was gay, but knew he was still the same person he’d always been. The only difference was that now we had a more complete picture of the son we love.
— Rob Portman and His Brave, Gay Son, News Desk, The New Yorker.
Aujourd’hui, Rob Portman, sénateur républicain de l’Ohio, soutient l’ouverture du mariage à tous les couples. Pourquoi? Son fils Will a fait son coming-out il y a deux ans, comme le raconte le sénateur sur CNN.
Comme dit Max, tout coming-out est héroïque. Et toute la force, le courage et le pouvoir intrinsèque du coming-out est bien résumé par ce cas très particulier.