Though Cyrus Goodman (played by Joshua Rush) had hinted at his sexuality throughout the show’s two previous seasons, the Feb. 8 episode, “One in a Minyan,” was the first in which the character said the words, “I’m gay.”
And though LGBTQ advocacy groups and publications alike praised “One in a Minyan,” the episode ― and Cyrus’ storyline overall ― garnered its share of critics, too. After one of them lashed out at Rush on Twitter last weekend, the 17-year-old actor proved himself wise beyond his years with a truly profound response.
“Gay kids are gonna exist no matter whether you like it or not,” he wrote Feb. 17. “And we need to support and love all kids in every way we can.”
Rush’s remarks came in response to a tweet that called “Andi Mack” a “very poor example” for its young audience given its embrace of an LGBTQ storyline.
Though the tweet was evidently deleted, Rush captured it for posterity with a screenshot and quipped, “The internet is forever.”
Rush, whose acting credits include “The Lion Guard” and “Chuck,” has been vocal in defending the significance of his “Andi Mack” storyline for the show’s young audience. With a median viewer age of 10 years old, the show has been among the top 10 cable series for girls ages 6-14 since it debuted in 2017.
“I think this storyline is definitely going to help a lot of my peers,” he told People in 2018. “I hope that more shows will follow in Disney’s footsteps with Cyrus’ storyline. Really, I look forward to the day that it’s not an unusual occurrence. I hope everyone can one day see that our differences are beautiful and that love is love.”