Media and public interest has never been about “outing” Aaron Hernandez
In recent days, there has been much talk about the life and death of former NFL tight end, Aaron Hernandez, with mass speculation that he may have been bisexual or gay.
Some have suggested that media outlets shouldn’t focus on this topic because there’s no public interest in the matter.
The Boston Globe, for example, ran a piece saying that “Gay Rights Advocates” are alarmed over swirling speculation about his private sexual life.
Really? With all of the very real threats facing LGBTQ rights, talk of Aaron Hernandez is what alarms “advocates”?
This type of commentary assumes something nefarious is going on about the reporting of the former New England Patriot’s player.
Let’s be clear – nobody is trying to “out” Aaron Hernandez as gay or bisexual.
Instead, people (straight and gay) are responding to information that has come out in public reporting since Hernandez’s passing that offers possible motivations about the crime that sent him to prison in the first place:
The 2015 conviction of Odin Lloyd.
According to credible news sources such as Newsweek, there is a theory of that murder suggesting Mr. Lloyd may have been killed to hush the details of Hernandez’s alleged long term romantic relationship with another man.
“Hernandez’s sexuality would, of course, not be relevant save for the fact that an intimate relationship he allegedly had with a male former high school classmate was at the center of the investigation into Lloyd’s murder.”
Folks, that is what sparked mass interest in this case.
The author of the Newsweek piece, Michelle McPhee, an Emmy nominated investigative journalist and awarding winning columnist, just yesterday spoke with Boston’s WAAF and shared the following:
“This has always been seen as a motive for the Odin Lloyd murder – no other motive has been offered up then or since.”
Apart from this nugget of information, there are other reasons people (straight and gay) are drawn to this case.
Kettle of Ingredients Stirring Mass Interest
Let’s review the kettle of ingredients stirring this into a national frenzy:
- The rise and fall of a young, professional football player.
- A mysterious suicide that occurred days after being found not guilty for a double murder.
- A suicide that occurred 48-hours after Hernandez’s lawyer said on the record that his client could [possibly] be let free for the Lloyd case.
- Reports from credible sources like CBS News that Hernandez gave away a watch, thought to be worth $50,000, to the family of an inmate; a person who The Daily Mail has identified as Hernandez’s “prison lover”.
- Conflicting reports about suicide notes, with denials being given by one lawyer and confirmation given by another.
- Word that Hernandez did in fact request to be cellmates Kyle Kennedy – a request that was ultimately turned down.
- Stories about synthetic marijuana in preliminary autopsy reports of Hernandez’s remains.
- Talk of Hernandez having a “Secret Life” and concealing his true identity.
- Kyle Kennedy’s lawyer refusing to characterize the nature of the relationship between his client and Hernandez, stating that the two were: “Close friends who spent a great deal of time together in prison.”
Summing Things Up
Interest in Mr. Hernandez is heavy because with each passing day, new information comes to light that raises more questions than answers.
We’ve seen mass public interest in the deaths of famous people before. This certainly won’t be the last time.
But to suggest there is an effort to somehow “out” Hernandez by people in the media (mainstream, LGBTQ or otherwise) only suppresses information sharing.
Worse, it presumes there is something wrong with being bisexual or gay, which there most certainly is not.
The fact that a person may have same sex attractions, may be bisexual or gay does not make a person maladjustive. Believing otherwise plays into harmful, homophobic stereotypes. If you need more insight, please review this report from the American Psychological Association.
The interest in Aaron Hernandez has always been about the mystery of his life, the circumstances of his death and the giant question mark about who he was.
Apparently, the Boston Globe’s Editorial group agrees.