Most people don’t make groundbreaking history just by walking down the street, hand in hand, with their boyfriend. But that’s exactly what happened earlier this month when Earvin “E. J.” Johnson III publicly came out after being filmed with his boyfriend in L.A. Since then, both Johnson’s father, Magic Johnson, and Kobe Bryant, as well as many other celebs, have praised the young man for his bravery, and now Johnson is speaking out about the pivotal moment for the first time since it happened.
In a new interview on the Internet series “Gwissues,” Johnson, who came out to his family years ago, explained that he feels like he’s coming out for a second time. Johnsons claims that, although he didn’t plan to come out to the public so soon, he’s now “reveling” in the moment.
“I always wanted to come into the spotlight,” he said. “I always had dreams and plans of doing my own thing and creating my own image, so it came a little sooner than I thought it would, but this is still something I knew I would be going through and would have to experience.”
Since coming out Johnson’s been lavished with praise from most fans, but he says he’s also been slammed by homophobes who have posted “nasty things about me and what I’m doing.”
“It’s almost like they’re attacking me for being me and so to that I can only say, ‘Well, I can only be myself, so I don’t know really what you want me to do,’” he told the host publicist, Howard Bragman, who recently began representing him.
Johnson, who is a junior at New York University studying event management and design, says that he wants to follow in his dad’s footsteps and have his own talk show.
And with his new mantle as a gay celebrity, Johnson says he wants to use his influence to be “the voice for young gay people who need someone to be on TV or wherever else to talk to them and talk about all kinds of issues that all of us face and not just homosexual issues, but all kinds of issues.”
“I definitely want to set a really good example,” he added.
So far, we’d say Johnson is doing a great job just by choosing to share an honest look into his life and showing the world that families, whether famous or not, don’t have to fall into the hetero role.
Check out some other famous celebrity LGBT kids below. –nicholas robinson