In an interview with LGBT sports blog
Outsports, figure skater Joe Johnson talks about his recent
Johnson's ice dancing partner, Karina
Manta, recently came out by posting on social media a video love
letter to her girlfriend. In contrast, Johnson quietly came out by
simply living his life openly on social media.
Their partnership could a first for
LGBT history books.
“I just started talking about [being
gay] on social media one day, because it stopped being convenient to
skirt around,” Johnson
“I certainly didn't feel obligated. I do think that LGBTQ people
having to come out to legitimize ourselves is unfortunate, because
being both LGBTQ and a private person is like … a thing that some
“I think visibility is vitally
important, but it should be noted that not every LGBTQ person feels
the need, and that's their right, and they're still valid in whatever
their identity may be.”
Johnson said that he's known he's gay
since he was eleven. “I tried to stifle that part of myself for
many years,” he said. After his first nationals in 2013, he came
out to his family. “My parents and brother reacted beautifully,”
Johnson also talked about his
relatively new relationship with Zac, whom he called “adorable.”
“We met in March, and it's been a
happy few months. He's a wonderfully gifted photographer, chef,
Legend of Zelda prodigy, handyman, sweetheart, you name it. We went
to a pumpkin patch on Saturday,” Johnson said.
He added that he's proud of Manta.
“I've learned so much from her, and she's become herself so
gracefully. I'm so proud of her,” he said.