Japanese music star Shinjiro Atae has come out as gay


    Japanese music star, Shinjiro Atae has come out as gay.

    The Japanese pop artist, 34, an alum of the group AAA, made the emotional announcement at a fan event at Tokyo’s Cube Shibuya on Wednesday, July 26, according to the AP.

    “What I’m going to tell you now may not be something you expect or hope to hear. Perhaps some of you may need time to understand,” Atae told fans at the event in Tokyo on Wednesday.

    “For years, I struggled to accept a part of myself … But now after all I have been through, I finally have the courage to open up to you about something,” he said. “I am a gay man.”

    Atae received the support of fans in making the announcement, as they gave him a standing ovation for the courageous announcement at a time Japan’s laws do not provide equal protection to LGBTQ people.

    LGBTQ activists and supporters welcomed Atae’s announcement as a big encouragement for the community in Japan.

    Sosuke Matsuoka, an LGBTQ activist who was at the event, said he got teary listening to Atae’s words. “If I heard his message when I was younger and struggling with my sexuality, it would have given me a big hope.” Matsuoka wrote in social media message that Atae’s coming out “would give courage to his peers and lead to a change of social mindset.”


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