I never thought I’d hear myself say this, but it’s just possible that the struggling gay rights movement has the scandalous Republican Party to thank for a really great year! First there was the groundbreaking, tender and moving Brokeback Mountain winning average folks' hearts and major film awards hand over fist, along with and including films such as Capote.
Then the U.S. political scene was rocked by the Mark Foley page scandal, putting congressmen and their staffs in danger of being outed left and right (both literally, politically, and figuratively). Add to that, the likes of ‘N Sync’s Lance Bass, Amazing Racer and hunk Reichen Lehmkuhl, and then Grey’s Anatomy’s T.R. Knight all coming out of the closet as gay, to name only a few of the more popular and notable entertainment celebrities.
Now word is trickling down that Neil “Doogie Howser” Patrick Harris (33) has denied a two-day-old denial by his publicist Craig Schneider mistakenly released to the news media stating Harris is not gay.
If you think you're confused by that last sentence, about now Jerry Falwell and Fred Phelps must feel like victims in a gay version of The Night of the Living Dead. All those actors were to be expected, but then there was famous and Bush-friendly, not to mention prominent evangelist Rev. Ted Haggard being snagged in a homosexual sex and drug scandal.
Harris’ self-declared “long-time sweetheart” and fellow actor David Burtka were recently rumored in the entertainment press to not only be gay, but a committed couple as well. Whispers didn’t really start up until Canada.com reported Neil got his lover a choice role on his current CBS comedy How I Met Your Mother.
Born June 15, 1973, Harris, one of this year’s People Magazine’s Hottest Bachelors, started his acting career in fourth grade. He tagged along with his older brother in Ruidoso, New Mexico to an elementary school audition as a munchkin in a kids' version of The Wizard of Oz. Instead, he got snagged to play Toto because he was the smallest one who tried out for the part.
From there he landed the role of David Hart in Clara’s Heart in 1988. In 1989, he was cast in the title lead as teen medical prodigy Doogie Howser M.D. from 1989 to 1992. From there he took on several stage and TV roles designed to lose his loveable boy doctor persona. These included a killer on Law and Order, as well as a troubled gang member in Howard Stern’s Son of a Beach. He also took parts in stage productions of Amadeus, Rent, and Cabaret, and in the recent movie in Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle.
Harris has stated that, in these times, he has no problems with people knowing he’s gay, and is very happy with his lover David.