PREACH IT! Now, don’t y’all hate on Chely Wright -- it ain’t country


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So. Chely Wright. Country singer. A hitmaker in the late 1990s. Comes out of the closet. And people are ... disappointed? “I feel entertainment news owes me a better lesbian,” one of my readers tweeted to me earlier today.

“All this build-up for something like this,” “Fran” commented on the Dish Rag.


“Who?” quipped too many other people to count.

In other words, the big letdown for gossip hounds at this hour isn’t that Chely Wright, country singer, has announced that she’s gay. The problem that she’s not a gay megastar. She isn’t Ellen DeGeneres back when she had a hit sitcom, or Neil Patrick Harris, who still has a hit sitcom. She’s not an Oscar winner like ‘True Blood’ star Anna Paquin, who recently made quite the ripple by announcing her bisexuality.

The cheek! Announcing one’s gayness while being not totally, outrageously world renowned! And having the utter gall to do it in hallowed People magazine, periodical of the Hollywood gods!

To be fair, these angry fan reactions do stem from some genuine, evil-genius-style media manipulation. Yes, Wright does have a book and album coming out. And Wright’s publicist, the exquisitely skilled Howard Bragman, has been working on the singer’s coming out, in one form or another, since last year. The real ramp-up has been in full swing since just around the GLAAD Awards a couple weeks ago. That’s forever in the blog world -- enough time for hype to build to almost hysterical proportions and for the guessing game to envelop pretty much every possibly-gay star in the Western Hemisphere.

Which brings us to the inevitable poll ...

-- Leslie Gornstein

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