Old Christine's Wanda Sykes: "I'm Proud to be Gay"

Inspired by gay marriage fight, the funnylady officially comes out of the closet at Las Vegas rally

By Marc Malkin Nov 16, 2008 5:58 PMTags

Bravo, Wanda Sykes!

The funnywoman and co-star of The New Adventures of Old Christine officially came out of the closet yesterday.

Sykes also announced she married her girlfriend on Oct. 25, just days before the passage of Proposition 8, which has banned gay marriage in California.

“You know, I don't really talk about my sexual orientation. I didn't feel like I had to. I was just living my life, not necessarily in the closet, but I was living my life," said Sykes, 44, while speaking at a Las Vegas rally for gay marriage.

“I got pissed off,” she continued. “They pissed me off. I said, 'You know what? Now I gotta get in your face.' And that’s what we all have to do now. They pissed off the wrong group of people. They have galvanized a community...Instead of having gay marriage in California, we’re going to get it across the country.”

Read on for what else she had to say...

Sykes imagined a day when same-sex marriage would be allowed nationwide. “When my wife and I leave California, I want to have my marriage also recognized in Nevada, in Arizona, all the way to New York," she said. "How can you stop people from loving each other?”

She was cheered and applauded throughout her almost five minutes of remarks. “I am proud to be a woman,” she said. “I’m proud to be a black woman and I’m proud to be gay.”

Shortly after election day, Sykes was among the 5,000 or so who marched throughout Los Angeles to protest Prop 8.

In L.A. yesterday, an estimated 12,000 people (I was one of them) protested in downtown L.A.. (Dozens of similar events took place throughtout the country, and even in countries including Canada and the Netherlands.)

Among the celeb speakers in L.A. were Ricki Lake, Marisa Jaret Winokur, Noah's Arc television star Daryl Stephens, Ugly Betty’s Alec Mappa and Lucy Lawless and Matt Lucas of the comedy series Little Britain.

Rocker/hitmaker Pink was seen in the crowd, as was former Queer As Folk star Peter Paige.

One protester held a sign that read, "We all can’t all marry Liza Minnelli!”

Meanwhile, on Friday, one of Hollywood’s most outspoken conservatives, Patricia Heaton, revealed she’s against Prop 8.

“I have a lot of friends who are gay, who are parents, and need to be able to take care of their kids and take care of each other, and they need to have those rights,” Heaton said at a Jonas Brothers concert in L.A. to celebrate the launch of 77kids by American Eagle.

—Additional reporting by Dahvi Shira