Days after TMZ posted video of Magic Johnson's son EJ holding hands with his boyfriend on the Sunset Strip, the basketball legend and Dodgers owner spoke to the gossip site for a video interview in which he declared his support for the 20-year-old NYU student.
"Now he's just the bubbly kid we knew again and he's just happy that it is out," said Johnson, who revealed that EJ came out to his parents as a younger teen.
"We've known for a long long time that my son EJ was gay," Johnson said, recalling how he and wife Cookie "finally had to sit down and talk about it and I told him, 'Look, I'm gonna love you regardless. Just let me know: are you or aren't you?' And then finally he just said yes I am."
Asked by TMZ's Harvey Levin about anti-gay comments on African-American blogs, Johnson responded: "We knew this was gonna happen because in our community we frown down on gays. ... I've been in the gay movement for a long time because of HIV and AIDS [activism] and so I see young men who are black who couldn't come out, who couldn't tell their parents. They were fearful what would happen."
He added of EJ's critics: "I'm hoping they understand this is year 2013 ... and so we should stop discriminating against people and just support them."
Johnson, who thinks EJ's TMZ encounter will inspire "a lot of black, young people who want to come out," also expressed that if a Dodgers athlete were to do the same, that he would fully support the decision.