I caught up with Johnny Weir as he preps for two big gay fundraisers this weekend in Los Angeles: Saturday at the GLAAD Awards and Sunday at a fundraiser for Equality California. Given his recent work with gay groups, and EQCA in particular, I wanted to know what he really thought about marriage. And his perspective was wonderfully traditional.
I believe as long as you can enter marriage and keep it going until you die, that’s the way to do a marriage. I don’t like the idea of marriage for money or tax breaks. I believe in the right reasons for people to get married: Love, devotion, partnership. If you’re going to get married, you need to be sure that that’s the person you’re going to be with for the rest of your life. But I believe everyone should have the same rights.
He said his traditional perspective on marriage comes from his parents, the high school sweethearts (mom a cheerleader, dad a football player) who have been married Johnny's whole life.
Still, he's not sure he'll end up married one day.
I don’t know if I’m the marrying kind. I’m very much catlike. And sex isn’t that important to me. Partnership is something I have with my family and my friends. My close circle of friends are my partners in crime. I have a certain way I like to live. If someone wanted to be with me, they’d either have to be very dumb or very accepting.
I also asked him about the recent LA Weekly piece that painted Weir as two-faced, on the one hand benefiting from the work of gay-rights groups while at the same time refusing to verbally say whether he is gay.
What year do we live in? Is it not 2010? It’s not 1910. I think the time for labeling people has come to an end. Everyone needs to move on and live in a way that everyone can live together. Whatever your own personal life is, it doesn’t matter. It has no basis on who I am as a person. My sexuality isn’t something I keep sacred but it’s not something I need to defend. I am so thrilled that GLAAD did come to my defense, but it wasn’t only gay groups that came to my defense. For someone to criticize me for not saying yes or no to a question is silly.
However, Weir told me that he will disclose much of his sexual past in a new autobiography that he is writing, which will come out in 2011. He said he's using the book to tell the full story of Johnny Weir because he can control the message in the book, and because "there are people out there who want to hear that story."
Sign me up.
If you're in Los Angeles this weekend, you can get up close and personal with Johnny at the April 18 fundraiser for Equality California.