When ‘Successful’ Gay Celebrities Go Back To High School With a Message For Bullied Kids

There’s the It Gets Better Project. Then came the Make It Better Project. And now there’s The Homecoming Project, where “successful gay adults” return to their high schools to tell kids that, hey, gay kids can be something.

THP, from the organization Live Out Loud, isn’t actually new, but it is poignant. With Dustin Lance Black as its most public face so far, the above video was uploaded in March chronicling the screenwriter’s 2009 return to North Salinas High School in California’s Central Valley. (Live Out Loud’s press release insists it’s a “new short video premiering online today,” but whatever.)

So many projects, I’m beginning to feel like I’ve got homework. But I do love the idea of “successful” queers, whatever that means, returning to their hometowns to speak directly to LGBT youth who might be struggling. Oh, and to the bullies currently tormenting them with the message that it gets worse. Like ex-GLAAD president Neil Giuliano.

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  • Alex

    I hope the definition of successful is very broad. I know as a gay teen, it’s not a visit from celeb or musician that would have inspired me the most, but rather a successful, openly gay person in my chosen career field. I think a school having an event inviting politicians and doctors and engineers &c., anyone who wants to come and talk would be fantastic.

  • Shouldn't certain gay sites & their commenters stop bullying gays too? ( John from England)


    It’s the same for any straight person. The bottom line is ga kids need to know that they can be visible. You can lie about who you are as a successful business man but not as an actor or screenplay writer!


  • scott ny'er

    i just can’t look at Dustin Black the same way after seeing those pics of his.

    oh and while this is great, i still think it won’t affect Bullies. Honestly, schools need to change back to the old system where teachers are in power. The teachers and classmates are the only ones who can stop bullies. OR if the victim is fearless, strong and can kick the bully’s ass. That helps too.

  • TommyOC

    I just can’t help but thinking Queerty’s use of quotes (e.g., “Successful”) implies that an Oscar-winning screenwriter is anything but.

  • Mark212

    Dustin Bareback isn’t a role model for kids.

  • Joe

    I think it’s great to get people back into their old schools to talk to kids. I agree that I don’t think it always needs to be a celebrity, but if one wants to then cool. I think talking to kids, and visiting your old school will get them a real sense of connection (because you are an alumnus) and hopefully will build up their self confidence that someone from their school made it big, so they can too.

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