Minutes after the Twittersphere erupted with news of Tom Cruise’s divorce from Katie Holmes jokes about his sexuality began. To be fair, the chatter about his sexuality never went away during their marriage, as The Family Guy gif above shows. Even with the birth of their clone baby, his couch-jumping weirdness on Oprah, and a host of public appearances made to highlight that the TomKat love affair was indeed real … well, it never quite seemed real.
Cruise’s sexual identity should not matter. Except it does. He is one of the world’s highest paid actors, and as such, the average red-blooded American male – the kind who sees his action movies in droves – demands he love and sleep with women. Admitting he was gay would likely negatively impact his box office draw in the bigoted Bible Belt, yes, but it would also inspire many young gays to be who they are without shame. In this way he could be a pioneer, of sorts.
Cruise is not going to do this because : 1) he values his box office draw and his status as one of the world’s leading movie stars and 2) Scientology, his chosen religion, looks down on homosexuality. Maybe Cruise, 49, is not gay. Maybe he has been the subject of nasty rumors that have muddied his sexuality to the masses. If so that is unfortunate. But not as unfortunate as if he has chosen to hide in the closet to collect $20 million paydays.
Cruise is not alone.
Fellow Scientologist John Travolta faces a lawsuit that he sexually harassed his male assistant/lover for six years.
Today when I searched “John Travolta” on Google the words “John Travolta Gay” came up second behind his name. This does not mean he is homosexual, but it does mean many people are interested in his legal case and the possibility he is gay.
Whereas Cruise has been married and separated/divorced three times in the last two decades, Travolta has been married to Kelly Preston since 1991. If Travolta is gay, he should quit the charade. He’s 58. He’s starred in Grease and Hairspray, for crying out loud. No one would be surprised. Maybe strangers would see him as less macho but did I mention he starred in Grease and Hairspray?