It's been a week since Ricky Martin's autobiography "Me" came out and he's been hitting the media rounds appearing on Oprah, Larry King, Univision's Aqui y Ahora, Ellen and The View, among others. It's actually pretty amazing how much media attention he has gotten considering the years the singer has been out of the limelight. He also graces People en Español's end of the year cover and Out magazine's Out100 cover).
To put it mildly, it's been a busy week for Martin. Sweetly, he has taken time out from his busy schedule for this...
WHAT!? Yes! A heartfelt message for my great friend Pedro Julio Serrano!
Pedro Julio, who works at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and was the founder of the LGBT-rights organization Puerto Rico Para Tod@s, was recognized for his amazing work last night at the New York City Hilton Hotel by Comité Noviembre. Ricky Martin was supposed to present the award live but when it became apparent he would not be able to make it, he sent the above message to be presented during the ceremony.
Particularly touching to me was that Pedro Julio's entire family was there supporting him (see photo). I look at his brothers proudly holding that gay pride Puerto Rican flag next to PJ in honor of his brother and I can't just feel but incredibly moved.
Moving to me is also that Ricky Martin would take his time - at this particular moment of his life - to honor Pedro Julio. These are the lines from his video statement that stick with me:
RICKY MARTIN: I would love to be there with you, my brother, but, unfortunately, it can't be done. But you and I are connected in a thousand ways. I give you thanks for being a teacher, for being a mentor, for being a warrior of the light. For being a Puerto Rican of pura cepa who is doing a wonderful job for the Puerto Ricans of today and also for the new generations. I simply do not have the words. You are a... you are magical, brother. I love you a lot, God bless you. And this honor is for you."I give you thanks for being a teacher, for being a mentor, for being a warrior of the light". Dude. That makes me tear up big time. Because I know the example that Pedro Julio has set for others and personally know the impact he has has in other people's life. And because Pedro Julio has also been an example in my life.
It reminds me of how few the visible positive examples of Latino gay life are and makes me appreciate this so much more for the beauty of a huge Latino superstar who has just come out deeming it important to honor the often thankless job of a Latino LGBT rights advocate.
And I just wanted to share.
- Ricky Martin's autobiography: Leaked details (Oct. 30, 2010)
- What are Pedro Julio and Ricky Martin up to? (Sept. 29, 2010)
- Ricky Martin greets LGBT activist Pedro Julio Serrano on Twitter (May 3, 2010)