Former Miss Kentucky Becomes First Openly Gay National Pageant Contestant

News & Views | Gerren Keith Gaynor | 03/11/2014 | 02:45 PM EDT

Djuan Trent says "I am queer" in personal blog

In 2010, Djuan Trent etched her name in history when she became only one of four African-American women to be crowned Miss Kentucky. Now she has yet another historic title to add under her belt.


Last week, Trent, 27, became the first national pageant contestant to publicly come out as lesbian by publishing a revealing post on her blog, "Life in 27."


“I have written and re-written and deleted and restarted this post more times than I care to share, and after all of that I have finally realized: “There ain’t nothin’ to it, but to do it.” So, here we go folks…” Trent wrote. “I am queer.”


In the candid post, Trent says it was a difficult journey to finally revealing her sexuality, as she had drafted and deleted the letter many times before working up the nerve to press that “publish” button.


“The most challenging part of my coming out journey was coming out to myself,” she said in an interview with theGrio. “It takes a little while to get to a place where you can truly and wholeheartedly come out to yourself. And once you get to that place, it becomes a little easier to come out to others.”


“The thing that held me back for so long was denial. I thought that if I locked it up on a box and kept it in a dark closet, that it would no longer exist. But I was so wrong. It hadn’t gone anywhere and it was just eating at me.”


Never in the history of national pageant has a queen, past or present, come out as lesbian. Trent’s audacious move not only sets a precedence for lesbian and bisexual, but could aid the LGBT movement in eradicating stereotypes about how people see or perceive what same-gender loving women look like.


Judging from her blog post, it appears Trent already has plans of using her platform and rebirthed attention to be a voice in the political movement for LGBT civil rights:


“Last week, U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn II ruled that Kentucky’s prohibition violates the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection under the law by treating queer folks “differently in a way that demeans them,’” she writes. “I have listened to people talk about ‘the abomination of our nation’ and ‘Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.’ I am not surprised that some people would react this way…I mean, if people didn’t react that way, then there would be no need for a movement, no need to fight for OUR rights.”

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