Former ‘Nsyncer Lance Bass and Jason Marsden of the Matthew Shepard Foundation introduced Collins.
“Thanks to each and every one of you for making one of the hardest decisions of my life the single most rewarding thing I have ever done,” Collins said.
“Now in one sense that may sound a little selfish but the simple fact is, at the end of the day, coming out is a gift that you give yourself. It’s the gift of shrugging off the burden of a secret. And when you don’t know exactly what the truth will bring, it’s the gift of standing a little bit taller on the court, or in the school, or in church – wherever – and knowing that no matter how everyone else is looking at you, they’re actually seeing you for who you truly are.”
“The best kinds of gifts are the ones you can share with everyone. When you stand a little bit taller, somebody always notices. Somebody who needed that hope really badly. When you live a little bit more honestly, a gay or transgender or lesbian teenager can see more clearly that the world really is getting better.”
“Coming out is really difficult. But [if] I’ve learned one thing from all of this, [it] is that the only thing harder is staying in the closet. … Coming out is a gift you can give yourself that can also help change the entire world,” he added.
Ah, Jason, it is not so here o. Coming Out is most definitely NOT a gift you give yourself in Nigeria. But I’m still so happy for you for being true to yourself.