"Whether I am straight or gay or bisexual is nobody’s business but mine,” former New York City mayor Ed Koch wrote in his 1992 autobiography Citizen Koch.
Holding true to his word, Ed Koch never did come out publicly if he was, in fact, gay. Perhaps if his 12-year reign over New York occurred after talk show queen Ellen DeGeneres came out in 1997—and still enjoyed a skyrocketing career—it would have been a different story.
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Instead, Koch served as mayor from Jan. 1, 1978 to Dec. 31, 1989, a time when Neil Patrick Harris was still known as Doogie Howser rather than being an openly gay actor playing womanizer Barney Stinson on How I Met Your Mother. Despite being just 20 and change years ago, society was (far!) less accepting of healthy LGBT relationships in the spotlight.
Like Koch, here are five additional celebrities and political figures, who were—if the rumors were true—not fortunate enough to feel comfortable and confident coming out.
View the gallery: 5 Celebs Who May Not Have Come Out
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Who do you think will be next to come out?
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