LGBTQ2S+ community angered by Australian newspaper accused of trying to out Rebel Wilson

By Alexandra Mae Jones and Vanessa Lee

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    TORONTO (CTV Network) — Actress Rebel Wilson revealed her relationship with her girlfriend Ramona Agruma in a photo, calling her a “Disney princess” last week, but a day later, an Australian newspaper posted a column stating that they had initially contacted Wilson about her sexuality, sparking wide condemnation from the LGBTQ2S+ community.

In an Instagram post on Friday, Wilson showed a photo of her and Agruma smiling, with the caption: “I thought I was searching for a Disney Prince… but maybe what I really needed all this time was a Disney Princess.”

Well-wishers flooded to the post, but it has since surfaced that going public with her relationship was not entirely her choice.

The Sydney Morning Herald published a column on Saturday, which has since been deleted, that stated that they had actually known about the couple.

They had given Wilson’s reps two days to comment, the Saturday column revealed. The column went on to express frustration that Wilson had decided to use that time to make her own relationship reveal.

“In a perfect world, ‘outing’ same-sex celebrity relationships should be a redundant concept in 2022,” columnist Andrew Hornery wrote. “Love is love, right?”

Screenshots of the column, which quickly made the rounds on social media, show the author referring to Wilson’s choice to make her own post as opting to “gazump the story,” with Hornery continuing on to write that “her choice to ignore our discreet, genuine and honest queries was, in our view, underwhelming.”

The editor defended the approach, saying, “like other mastheads do every day, we simply asked questions and as standard practice included a deadline for a response,” while claiming a decision to publish a story had not yet been made at the time.

However, the situation sparked outrage from the LGBTQ2S+ community around the world, with many pointing out that it should be a person’s choice when to reveal themselves as part of the LGBTQ2S+ community.

“That’s a big problem. It was not her choice. Coming out is something that is strictly [personal] – you cannot intervene in someone’s personal life,” Simon Gamache, Executive Director of Pride Montreal, told CTV News.

“She might have had her personal reasons for not doing this before. And you know what, you do not have to be out. You can live as an LGBTQ person without being out.”

Monday came with a mea culpa from the columnist.

In a new column for the Sydney Morning Herald, he wrote that he had “made mistakes” and that the situation was “mishandled.

“I understand why my email has been seen as a threat,” he wrote, adding, “As a gay man, I’m well aware of how deeply discrimination hurts. The last thing I would ever want to do is inflict that pain on someone else.”

For the most part, Wilson has remained silent, only tweeting that it was “a very hard situation”, but she is “trying to handle it with grace.”

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Sonja Puzic

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