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Sally Field talks gay son in Human Rights Campaign letter

By Sam Rigby


Sally Field has discussed her experiences raising her gay son in an open letter for the Human Rights Campaign.

The Brothers & Sisters actress said that it has been “one of the great privileges of my life” to be a part of her son’s journey.

Field is supporting the Human Rights Campaign’s efforts to prevent the introduction of laws that would allow discrimination of the LGBTI community on religious grounds. The campaign is trying to raise $150,000 (£90,200) by the end of March.

She said: “The three things I’m most proud of in my life are my sons, Peter, Eli and Sam. They are kind, loving and productive people. Each with their own list of talents and accomplishments. Sam is my youngest son, by 18 years, and he’s gay. To that, I say: So what?

“Growing up, Sam wanted desperately to just be like his older brothers – athletic, rambunctious and even a little bit macho. He wanted to beat Eli at tennis, trounce Peter at computer football and learn everything about every basketball player on the court. But Sam was different. And his journey to allow himself to be what nature intended him to be was not an easy one.

“When I saw him struggling, I wanted to jump in. But his older brothers held me back. They told me I couldn’t travel that road for Sam. It was his to travel, not mine. I had to wait for him to own himself in his own time.

“I could make it easier only by standing visibly to the side, clearly loving him, always being there and always letting him know. Finally, at 20, long after he beat his brothers at tennis and computer games and knew as much as anyone about basketball, Sam was able to stand up proudly and say, ‘I am a gay man’.

Field went on to write: “There are people out there – organizations and politicians, strangers who have never even met Sam – who would rather devote themselves to denying his happiness.

“Why would anyone want to prevent my son—or anyone’s son or daughter—from having basic legal safeguards like family medical leave, Social Security survivors benefits, or health insurance? It doesn’t make any sense—but it won’t change until people speak out. I’m proud to stand with HRC to add my voice. Will you join me?” the double Oscar-winning actress concluded.

Last month, Jan Brewer, the Governor of Arizona, vetoed a bill that would have allowed businesses to deny service to people on religious grounds.

> Hillary Clinton praises Arizona governor for vetoing anti-gay bill