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Prom Cancelled Due to Gay Teen? OUTRAGEOUS!

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I cannot even imagine what this teen is going through right now.

constance mcmillen

Dr. Michelle Golland: I am outraged that a school in Jackson, Miss., has canceled its senior prom because one of its students, Constance McMillen, 18 -- an openly gay senior -- wants to take her girlfriend as her date. Oh, and she can't wear a tux either!

We live in a free country where people should not be discriminated against based on their race, creed or sexual orientation. As a psychologist, when I hear about these stories of such blatant discrimination and ignorance, I am appalled and disgusted. It is more disturbing to know that this despicable conduct comes from people in power -- such as the Itawamba County School Board.

These are adults who should be concerned with the well-being of their students, not creating barriers for them and fueling bigoted beliefs within their own community. The school board should be more concerned with the number of teen suicides (which are often caused by teens feeling as though they cannot be openly gay for fear of hatred, ridicule and violence). Rather than create a safe place for our teens, adults on the Itawamba County School Board have created a cauldron of hate within the school. These shameful adults have created an environment where it is seen as acceptable to treat gays, lesbians or anyone different as "others."

Constance's peers in high school are angry with her. Many of them are telling her that she has ruined their prom and their senior year. These students have a right to be angry, but their frustration should be squarely focused on the close-minded adults around them. The pressure now put on this teen is enormous, and it is directly due to the school board and their ignorance. The school board better hope and pray that nothing happens to this young girl, her girlfriend or their families at the hands of her peers (or anyone else in this community) because of their inflammatory stance -- or they may be dealing with more than just a lawsuit due to discrimination. (The lawsuit was filed by the ACLU this week.)

The grace and courage of this young woman should be applauded. Constance is brave and wise beyond her years. She is clearly aware that her actions to fight discrimination against gays and lesbians in the school system will help kids who are openly gay in years to come. Her father encouraged her to go back to school after the news broke about the prom being cancelled. He told her to hold her head up high and be proud of who she is no matter what others may be saying. I am sure he will be right by his daughter's side, fighting against this injustice. I know I would be organizing the biggest protest I could, renting her that tux and hosting the prom at my house!

What would you do if this were your daughter and your school district?



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12 comments so far | Post a comment now
Allison March 15, 2010, 1:16 PM

I am appalled and if this were my daughter’s school I would be outraged and go straight to the board. This would be regardless if it was my daughter or not. I hope that with the media uproar over this they will see the mistake they have made!

Black Iris March 15, 2010, 1:38 PM

It sounds like it’s time for some of the parents to organize an alternative prom.

Kristin March 15, 2010, 7:41 PM

My fiance was reading about this earlier and he found an article that said a local hotel owned by Sean Cummings was going to host the prom for free for them! How wonderful!! Best part—it won’t be a school function that way and the school doesn’t have a say in ANYTHING that goes on now!

Stephanie March 15, 2010, 8:40 PM

It’s so sad that this happened. This is so incredibly bigoted of them. It’s appalling that this sort of thing happens in this day and age. I hope that someday the people who made this decision are ashamed of themselves.

C March 16, 2010, 4:39 AM

Since when is it a school’s job to legislate sexual orientation, hate and prejudice? Sexual orientation is a protected category here for housing. It is unconstitutional to discriminate. I hope whoever did this is fired. Welcome to the 21st century.

Susan Bickmore March 16, 2010, 9:48 AM

If the other parents got together and protested to allow all the teens to go to the prom then maybe the students would see that it is the school board to blame and not the student herself.

Anna March 17, 2010, 12:29 PM

How I wish people could get their facts straight! This school is not located in Jackson, MS. It is located in the northern portion of the state. Itawamba County. Almost five hours from Jackson. I know most folks out in the big ol’ world think of us Mississippians as red necks with no education, but please, if you are going to bash, get the locale correct! And personally, girls have been going to prom together for years and no one has said a word until now.

Anonymous March 19, 2010, 9:24 AM

I agree with the school board. Its dumb as hell to try to go to the prom gay and its an embarrasment to your school. GROW UP AND GET A BOYFRIEND WHY DONT YOU!!!!!

Anonymous March 19, 2010, 10:41 AM

the prom was canceled because the two lesbian girls involved were too damn self-centered and self-important. i dont care if they are lesbians. that’s up to them. i myself am gay. i have a boyfriend and he and i went to our prom together, one boy with another, both of us dressed as boys. but because the two girls were so selfish and demanded that they be allowed to attend the prom dressed as boy and girl, they ruined the prom for all of their fellow classmates. they could have attended the prom as one girl with another and the prom would not have been cancelled and their classmates would have enjoyed themselves.then the two lesbian girls could have lived the rest of their lives together in peace.the whole thing was the result of the selfishness of the two girls. it was COMPLETELY unfair and inconsiderate of the two girls.

Anonymous March 29, 2010, 11:58 AM

To the 2 anon at the end, especially the one who went with a gay partner - if I wanted to wear a tux, it shouldn’t matter if my partner is a male or female - it’s a clothing choice, and most schools do not dispute those. It’s clearly about not wanting lesbians at the prom who are out and open. Grow up, and stop acting like a bad example of the gay community. You don’t represent the views of the many. You represent the prejudice of yourself. No wonder the school board and students want to think it’s her fault, when in our own community people like you would blame her.

Cory Tullier August 29, 2010, 2:48 PM

School is supposed to prepare you for the real world so I assume that the people who did this would like no new marriages and adoptions for anyone either because gay people can do some of those things or want to.

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