vacca

New York City Councilman James Vacca, aka Jimmy to his constituents and those who know him, has come out of the closet and declared himself a gay man.

Vacca said in a tweet, “After talking w/ my friends & family I’ve decided to come out publicly as a gay man. Now back to the Golden Girls! ” in his courageous announcement now makes a total of 7 New York City Council members that are publicly out identifying as gay.

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For Bronx residents of the LGBT community this is especially important as our borough now has not one but TWO visibly out elected officials joining the ranks with Councilman Ritchie Torres who was a former aide to Vacca before running for office in 2013.

Vacca’s district 13 is the largest geographic council district in The Bronx and covers a swath of conservative neighborhoods like Pelham Bay, Morris Park, Throggs Neck, and City Island making him stand out even more in this area.

Rumors have swirled around his sexuality for decades despite once having been married and a father but in a statement, he said, “Every person has their own journey and I am fortunate to be able to make the decision to come out on my own terms. My orientation is an innate part of who I am and I want my friends, family, colleagues, and constituents to share in this part of my life,”

As a gay man, I understand the importance of coming out at your own time. It is your decision and your decision alone. It is a scary one and one that is not easy so kudos to him for his bravery.

New York City Council Speaker, Melissa Mark-Viverito, said in a tweet, “I’m beyond proud. You serve as an inspiration to all those, particularly our youth, who struggle with coming out.”

Vacca now joins Councilmembers Corey Johnson and Rosie Mendez of Manhattan, James van Bramer and Daniel Dromm of Queens, Carlos Menchaca of Brooklyn and of course Ritchie Torres from The Bronx.

Staten Island, the biggest bastion of conservative New Yorkers, is the only one without an out councilmember.

Cheers to your bravery, Jimmy!

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