'The press became fixated on Anderson’s orientation. And for years, I talked around it'
Kathy Griffin and Anderson Cooper are more than just a pair of television personalities who team up every year to host CNN’s New Year’s Eve coverage from Times Square in New York City.
They also happen to be very close friends.
So when Cooper acknowledged publicly that he is gay this week, Griffin was among the famous people who expressed support for the CNN anchor and daytime talk show host on Twitter.
The red-headed comic may have made fun of singer Clay Aiken (calling him Gaykin) before he officially came out but she writes Tuesday (3 July) in a column for The Daily Beast that she never would have dreamed of outing Cooper.
‘Quite frankly, he never gave me permission to speak about something that represented the one part of his life he was not comfortable having confirmed in the media,’ she writes. ‘While I’ve tried to protect my friend and represent him the way he would most prefer, I was never exactly clear on just how to do it, how to say it.’
Griffin, who hosted Cooper last week on her weekly Bravo show Kathy, was often asked about his sexuality.
‘I’m not really sure at what point it changed, but the press—or at least the press who covered my little carnival—became fixated on Anderson’s orientation. And for years, I talked around it,’ she writes. ‘Believe it or not, I don’t “out” people. It is neither my business nor my desire.’
While she does not mention her previous Aiken jokes in the column, Griffin does acknowledge her jokes about Ryan Seacrest which hint that he might be gay as well as her comments about Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King being more than best friends.
Griffin mentions the international reporting Cooper sometimes does and worries if being open about his sexuality could put him in harms way in some parts of the world.
‘Here’s the thing: I love my friend Anderson and remain immensely proud of him. And I’m honored, truly, that he considers me a friend. But I just want him to be careful. Of course he wouldn’t be doing his job if he really were being careful. And he wouldn’t be who he is.’