It’s been a whirlwind year of pop superstar Sam Smith — after officially coming out as non-binary in March, just last month, Smith publicly announced they were changing their preferred pronouns to “they/them.” Now, they have yet another celebrity standing in their corner: Adam Lambert.
In a new interview with NME, Lambert spoke about Smith’s coming out, saying that he understands what they’re experiencing in terms of added attention. “The media loves something that feels new and ten years ago — in America anyway — there wasn’t a lot of mainstream music people identifying as gay, so it was a novelty, and I feel there might be some parallels there,” he said. “On a personal level, I’m really happy for Sam that they’ve found their truth and they’re feeling liberated by it.”
Lambert continued saying that ultimately, Smith’s public coming-out has the potential to help further destigmatize the public discussion surrounding non-binary identities. “At some point, you have to break through the ceiling and discuss trans or non-binary issues and I’m so proud of Sam,” Lambert said. “They’re really doing a bold thing.”
Since Smith came out, some online trolls (and Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan) have criticized the singer, saying that they changed their pronouns and came out in order to garner positive publicity. Lambert, however, has a message for those people.
“If you stop for a minute and make it not about you and put yourself in the shoes of the person that’s being talked about and try to understand their experience — just for a second — you’ll realize what’s being asked is just that you be a decent human being,” he said. “People get defensive, saying ‘How dare you ask me to change the way I think!’, and just a little empathy would help.”