“13 Reasons Why” Actor Brandon Flynn Comes Out: “Equality Takes Courage”

"We've been scared shitless our whole lives, thanks to all the stigmas that surround us."

Actor Brandon Flynn made his mark earlier this year as bad boy Justin Foley on Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why. Now, in an emotional Instagram post, the actor makes the case for marriage equality in Australia—and identifies himself as part of the LGBT community.


Flynn, who appeared Sunday at the Emmys, was inspired to write after seeing someone had written “Vote No” in skywriting over Sydney, Australia, where a public survey on same-sex marriage has deeply divided the nation.

“I hope your hate and lack of understanding fades, just like those words will,” he wrote, addressing the skywriter. “Too many of my friends have been kicked out of their homes, kept in the closet, beat up, killed, ridiculed by church and state, institutionalized. And you are scared that if we vote YES, you won’t be able to show your hate for Us. Fuck that.”

“We’ve been scared shitless our whole lives, thanks to all the stigmas that surround us—stigmas that were set in place by the same kind of people who flew that plane over Sydney,” he added. “We’ve fought, we’ve come out bravely even in our fear, and you wrote a message in the sky because you’re scared. Equality takes courage, it worries me that too many people in this world lack the balls to stand up for what is right. #fuckhate”

Brandon Flynn/Instagram

It’s not entirely clear if the 23-year-old actor was speaking metaphorically when using “we.” Earlier this summer, he wrote a harshly worded Instagram slamming Donald Trump’s decision to ban trans service members from the U.S. military.

I'm sure most people didn't believe it then, but almost a year later your interests in our community are proven to discard minorities, people of color, education for our children, women, and due to your new set of tweets this morning we are informed that trans soldiers who had to fight in silence for who they are, are now, no longer allowed to fight at all. We are not strengthening our military, we are destroying our united nation. We are creating enemies with other countries and within our own citizens. The mere 15,000 trans soldiers who are just an expense to you, were proof to individuals of progression and strength, if that weakens us, I don't want to know what you think strengthens us. You are a disgrace @realdonaldtrump… the future you are creating will be read in history books, in the format of a tweet; and we will wonder what the hell this country was thinking when they voted you in. And to the trans community, please let us know what we can do, how we can stay informed. I love you.

A post shared by Brandon Flynn (@flynnagin11) on

In April, a series of Instagrams featuring Flynn and 13 Reasons co-star Miles Heizer acting adorable led some to think the two actors were dating in real life.

Happy birthday @flynnagin11 You're an angel amongst men

A post shared by miles heizer (@younggoth) on

Golden peach emoji

A post shared by Brandon Flynn (@flynnagin11) on

Yooooo James Blake realness @younggoth

A post shared by Brandon Flynn (@flynnagin11) on


A rep for Heizer scotched those rumors, though, telling Page Six, “Miles and Brandon are friends from the show but are not dating.”

Dan Avery is a writer-editor who focuses on culture, breaking news and LGBT rights. His work has appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Advocate and elsewhere.