Ricky Martin is a global superstar, but even he has been wracked with fear and anxiety, explaining to a homophobia awareness conference gathered at the United Nations that “for many years, I lived in fear … because I was hating myself because I grew up listening to a very crooked concept: `You’re gay. You belong in hell.'”
Martin, who has been an outspoken LGBT rights activist since coming out in 2010, told conference attendees that he wishes he could come out about his sexuality again, saying of the experience “it’s just beautiful – you find love.”
Martin was joined at the New York City symposium by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, whom the “Livin’ La Vida Loca” singer commended for his address regarding equality among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
“They, too, are born free and equal,” said Ban, according to the Associated Press. “I stand shoulder-to-shoulder with them in their struggle for human rights.”
Martin, 40, will soon be able to continue his human rights campaign abroad with the announcement that he intends to move his twin boys, Matteo and Valentino, to Australia in 2013. The pop star will be starting a new gig as a coach and judge on the Australian version of “The Voice” after ending his run on Broadway’s “Evita” on January 26.
“To be able to be a part of The Voice family is something interesting and it will be a beautiful six months,” Martin said of the move on Australian television Monday. “The first week or so it will just be me and my manager but I am definitely bringing the family here with me.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.