I'm gay too, admits son of homosexuality opponent

The son of a Christian activist known for his strident opposition to abortion and homosexuality, has made a startling announcement – he’s gay.

The son of a Christian activist known for his strident opposition to abortion and homosexuality, has made a startling announcement – he’s gay.

In an article in the May issue of Out magazine – for which he was paid €1,900 - Jamiel Terry, 24, says he first realised he was gay seven years ago, when a male friend with whom he had been intimate asked if they were gay or bisexual.

“I didn’t know how to respond,” he writes. “We had been having sex for ages, but I’d always believed I couldn’t be gay. I was the son of Randall Terry, a major leader of the Christian right’s anti-abortion movement and now a leader in the fight against marriage for same-sex couples.”

Before the Out article was released, Randall Terry published his own essay: “My prodigal son, the homosexual”, on several Internet sites, writing that his son “sold out our family’s privacy and private discussions for cold cash”.

The younger Terry told The Washington Post his father drove from Florida to Charlotte, where the son lives, to speak with him about the first-person magazine story – and to ask why he had not told the elder Terry about it.

“I told him: ‘Dad, how was I supposed to tell you? Look who you are,”’ Jamiel Terry said in yesterday’s Post. He also denied his father’s accusations that Out’s editors solicited the article and put words in his mouth. The younger Terry said he sought out the magazine.

But Jamiel Terry said it was true, as his father had claimed, that he had been convicted of drunken driving, written bad cheques and committed other frauds.

Randall Terry founded Operation Rescue in 1986. The group applied civil rights-era strategies of civil disobedience to the fight against legalised abortion. He has also spoken out against gay marriage.

Jamiel Terry is the son of a woman whom the elder Terry talked out of having an abortion. The Terrys took in Jamiel and his two sisters as foster children, and then adopted Jamiel and his younger sister in 1994. The children’s mother has since died.

“Tragically, by the time we got him as a foster child, he (Jamiel) had already learned a lifestyle of deceit,” Randall Terry writes.

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