"I'm not afraid. Somebody has to start the conversation," said Chris Ramazzotti, who's Lebanese and agreed to reveal his name while discussing homosexuality among Arabs here.

Other gay Arabs didn't disclose their identities citing safety risks as a reason, and to prevent their families from being criticized by Dearborn's close-knit Arab community.

Ramazzotti is the executive director of Al-Gamea, a group formed in 2006 to address the growing needs of local gay Middle Eastern Americans. In 2009 it became a 501c3 nonprofit organization.

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