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Anderson Cooper has announced that he is gay.
The biggest star at CNN, Cooper has long been rumored to be gay but has largely kept his personal life private. In a letter to Andrew Sullivan, he makes the announcement.
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“The fact is, I’m gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn’t be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud,” he writes.
“I have always been very open and honest about this part of my life with my friends, my family, and my colleagues,” he continues. “In a perfect world, I don’t think it’s anyone else’s business, but I do think there is value in standing up and being counted. I’m not an activist, but I am a human being and I don’t give that up by being a journalist.”
Cooper says that he had worked to maintain his privacy to aid his job as a reporter — “I have found that sometimes the less an interview subject knows about me, the better I can safely and effectively do my job as a journalist,” he says — but realized the social impact of his silence outweighs his personal comfort and professional advantage.
“There continue to be far too many incidences of bullying of young people, as well as discrimination and violence against people of all ages, based on their sexual orientation, and I believe there is value in making clear where I stand,” he writes.
CNN sources say that the network was privy to Cooper’s email to Sullivan, a blogger for The Daily Beast. Officially, CNN offered no comment preferring to let Cooper’s words stand on their own. The CNN anchor is currently out of the country on assignment.
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In April, Cooper was ranked sixth in Out Magazine‘s Power List, despite not publicly acknowledging his sexuality. Now that he is a daytime talk show host, as well, he is more likely to include his personal life in his career, much as Ellen DeGeneres, an open lesbian, has done.
Cooper joins stars such as Matt Bomer and Jim Parsons in coming out quietly this year.
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