Queer Eye star Jonathan Van Ness is having a hard time celebrating former Congressman Aaron Schock’s coming-out.
Van Ness, the program’s grooming expert, was born in Quincy, Ill., within the state’s 18th Congressional District, which Schock, a Republican, represented in the U.S. House from 2009 to 2015, when he resigned due to allegations of financial improprieties. Schock, long rumored to be gay, came out in an Instagram post last week.
Van Ness is not about to forgive Schock’s anti-LGBTQ record, which included opposition to marriage equality, LGBTQ-inclusive hate-crimes legislation, and the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.”
“The amount of queens I’m seeing like Aaron [Schock’s] insta is such a lol,” Van Ness wrote Friday in an Instagram story, noting that Schock “did a lot of dumb & stupid shit.” He explained, “Y’all this man lived in the closet while voting against LGBTQ interests for years. He screams about how he was victimized as he continues not giving back to the community he [actively] legislated against. Also his apology wholly dodged any responsibility in the awful actions he perpetuated against our community.”
Schock had said in his post that opposing marriage equality was a common position when he took it, shared by leaders in both the Republican and Democratic parties. “The truth is that if I were in Congress today, I would support LGBTQ rights in every way I could,” he said.
Van Ness wants Schock to make amends, which he says the former congressman hasn’t done yet. “I hope you actually work to undo your legacy,” the Queer Eye star said, adding, “I want to celebrate Aaron but I find it hard.”
Some other prominent LGBTQ people are unforgiving as well. Journalist Michelangelo Signorile tweeted, “Screw him.” A currently serving gay congressman, New York Democrat Sean Patrick Maloney, said he disagreed with Signorile and was ready to welcome Schock, but that Schock should “own up to his misconduct & apologize.”