Submitted on YouTube as part of Dan Savage’s “It Gets Better”. Watch the whole thing. Get your kleenex out first, though.
Also, listen to this: Dan Savage’s interview with Melissa Block on NPR’s All Things Considered. The part that I think matters specifically to the Joel Burns’ video:
BLOCK: Have you actively tried to go to well-known gay figures in popular culture and say, look, could you do a video for us? We think it would really have an impact on young kids.
Mr. SAVAGE: You know, we didn’t. We put the channel up, and we thought, you know, we want these to be average, everyday gays and lesbians. The first couple hundred videos were from regular people. And then the celebrities starting making videos, which is great.
You know, Tim Gunn’s video in particular, Chris Colfer’s video, the star of “Glee,” who is only 19 and a couple years out of high school and gay himself and a victim of bullying, terrifically moving videos and would be moving if no one knew who either of those men were.
But what people need to understand, a lot of these gay kids, you know, they see Ellen, and they think, well, what are my chances of becoming Ellen? One in 300 million, literally. And if that’s what it takes to be safe and happy, to be a rich and famous celebrity, what are my chances?
And what they need to see in addition to Ellen are, you know, the lesbian dairy farmers in Vermont who recorded a video, and the average, everyday people: firefighters and cops and Marines who have all recorded videos, letting them know that they don’t have to be rich and famous to be happy and to have joy in their lives.