Jason Howard Green

Jason Howard Green

Monday, April 17, 2017

SURVIVING SURVIVOR - Outing Someone is Not Okay!

Surely you've heard. Even people that are not fans of the reality show Survivor couldn't escape the whirlwind of controversy that recently erupted.  Every channel and every available news anchor was sharing this story like it was breaking news.

Just in case you're unaware, what had happened was  . . . it was an elimination moment and contestant Jeff Varner (pictured left), in a desperate attempt to save himself, decided to out fellow contestant Zeke Smith (pictured right) as transgender.  I guess he thought that would shift the attention away from himself but quite the contrary happened. Instead every remaining contestant rightfully ganged up on Jeff asking him, "Why would you do that?" And stating,  "That was not cool."

Apparently the world shared this sentiment with the Survivor cast because there has been a great deal of backlash aimed at Jeff following this episode. He was voted off the show. He has since lost his job as a real estate agent in North Carolina.

After hearing this controversy I couldn't help but reflect on an excerpt from my book The ABCs of Coming Out. The O in the book states, "Outing other people is not okay." I went on to share that "coming out is a personal, private and sometimes life-changing decision. When a person makes the decision to come out it is usually after some serious, intimate soul searching. Just because you are aware of someone's sexual orientation [or gender identity], it does not automatically give you permission to share it with the rest of the world when that person may not be ready to do so himself."

I do feel that Jeff is totally sorry and very remorseful about what he did. Jeff is a gay man himself.
He posted the statement below on his Twitter account. These words are powerful and I believe they're his truth.

When I first heard this story I too was a bit outraged at Jeff. But I think there is sincerity in his attempt to make amends and I believe everyone is deserving of a second chance when they make the effort towards redemption. I wish both contestants nothing but the best in there future endeavors.

If you have not seen what transpired, please take a peek at the clip below:

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