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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 9/16/10

The Power of Coming Out With GLEE

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National Coming Out Day is October 11, 2010 but when asked, "Tell your story", I find it difficult because there are so many times my husband & myself have had to come out. This year, in honor of the ground-breaking TV series GLEE,myself & my husband decided to tell a story of self-empowerment with GLEE.

The Power of Coming Out With GLEE
The Power of Coming Out With GLEE
(Image by Kevin Norte)
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The Power of Coming Out2

Don Norte 1.0

When we heard in the summer of 2010 that when GLEE begins the new season with Kurt Hummel being a freshman, one of us said, "Oh, another Twin Peaks." One of us was momentarily sad and thought it was a bad idea to make Kurt a freshman because all of the self-empowerment messages will be irrelevant like that forgetful season of DALLAS.

For us, being out in high school was real. We are high school sweethearts and got married on our 30th anniversary. One was saddened about the news of Kurt, so the other said, "Not So." We realized then that we were watching two completely different shows. So we watched the series again but this time with 4 eyes. What we saw was that Glee is a non-episodic musical dramedy series that focuses on a high school choir (a modern glee club) sometimes called "New Directions", at William McKinley High in Lima, Ohio. It is a school where Kurt may never graduate from. Each episode contains one or more vignettes reflecting on reoccurring varying themes with the strongest being self-empowerment. Accompanying the vignettes are songs from the Great American Song Book.

Some of the vignettes appear to follow each other but they seem to be set in slightly altered realities. The re-occurring secondary characters are examples of this plot device. To date there has only been one explicit two part episode.

One of us originally assumed from the episode 3 on that GLEE was like no show on earth. The other thought he wasn't following it correctly because he was reading. But "The Power of Glee" was revealed from one spouse to another on the day it was announced that Kurt was being sent back in time and will be a freshman and he arrives self-empowered and openly gay.

The Power of Coming Out2

Kevin Norte 2.0

We realized that FOX will have to explain the "Power Of Glee" when Kurt is sent back in time to be a Freshman. We cannot afford to lose the feeling of empowerment GLEE generates because of the Kurt storyline. This 21st century sense of self-empowerment is best revealed in episode 20 where it takes Lady GaGa's message of self-empowerment and puts FANGS into it. Did "Bad Romance" ever occur? "Was Kurt in it?" Of course, because Kurt is the paradox of GLEE and its heart and soul. Ryan Murphy's integrity requires him to not hide the emotional truth of GLEE and Kurt arrives at McKinley as an out student.

Empowerment is saved and it is just another part of the GLEE spectrum of vignettes where Kurt's theme of self-empowerment and "COMING OUT" is told in different ways. (Season 1, Episodes 3 and 4.) Clearly with gym suited Sue Sylvester reading fascist editorials as if she was Archie BUNKER(?) on a non-existent TV(?) and Will hammering down in a BUNKER (?) at school, or Will directing an adult version of GLEE (?), our minds were extremely over-stimulated but not confused.

We understood the Power of GLEE. As vignettes, Burt Hummel WILL lead by example and build upon the message of self-empowerment by joining the PTA, the school board, or P-FLAG or all of them because it is the right thing to do. It is the emotional truth of a father who loves his gay son. And YES, Kurt WILL come out again (sometimes) because the emotional truth is that all of us in the LGBT community come out whenever we meet new people and are emotionally honest. Along with it comes self-empowered. So on National Coming Out Day, let's not forget the self-empowerment that comes along with saying, "I'm GAY!"

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Kevin Norte is a legal analyst, frequent guest Op-Ed contributor for Los Angeles's Metropolitian-New Enterprise, political blogger, and an attorney. Kevin, earlier in his career helped organize the attorneys at his place of employment into an (more...)
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