Friday, April 9, 2010

End the Intolerance

A little while back, a student at Itawamba Agricultural High School in Mississippi named Constance McMillen went through what I would call one of the worst instances of intolerance that I have ever seen. What happened? Constance had asked to go to her senior prom with her female date. Yes, Constance is a lesbian, and all she wanted was to take her girlfriend. Instead of saying yes (which is the correct answer), what did the school do?

They cancelled the senior prom. For everyone.

Apparently, one girl being a lesbian and wanting to take her female date quantifies the cancellation of one of High Schools biggest traditions. How can you possibly be so bigoted that you would cancel the entire prom just because of one student's sexual orientation?

It wasn't over, though. Constance worked with the American Civil Liberties Union and successfully sued the school for violating her personal rights. Unfortunately, it didn't go much beyond that. The judge did not force the school to hold a prom; he was satisfied with the fact that the school promised that she would be welcome at the private prom that was to be held.

So, Constance attended a private dance that was billed as the school's prom. The only problem was - it wasn't. The "event" was attended by Constance, her date, and five other students, two of which had learning disabilities. The "event" was a decoy. Virtually all of the other students went to a parent sponsored prom, which of course Constance wasn't invited to.

So, there you have it - America the free. Unless you're gay or a lesbian. Then it's America, the kind of free, but only if you're a straight white male Protestant. I don't literally mean it that way, but you catch my drift. This is a public school that humiliated her like this, a PUBLIC SCHOOL. Despite my predispositions towards public schools, the fact that they are public means that they have to provide equal opportunity for EVERY student, which is why I approve of the Student Non-Discrimination Act. This act would be the first of its kind on the federal level, and bars public schools from discriminating based on gender or orientation.

If you agree that Constance had her rights violated, sign the ACLU's petition.

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