Letters To The Itawamba County School District

Comments

1
Sent out the e-mail. But seriously, you honestly think that a bunch of "yankees" are going to change the mind of these backward thinking freaks at the end of the day?

Ill be shocked if the school will change it's stance and I am sure a local church will host the prom for white straight couples only.
2
I don't really expect anything to come from this.

At the very least, they'll see the scale of people supporting Constance.

I sent my e-mail earlier.
3
Called several times to reach Principal Wiygul, was told at various times that he was either "in a meeting" or "gone for the day." Left my name and number on my last call for him to get back to me. Wonder if his secretary even took it down.

Called the Superintendent and, before being transferred to her voicemail, heard the exasperated voice of the woman at the desk.

Seems clear to me that, if nothing else, we're doing a great job of distracting them.
4
Called several times to reach Principal Wiygul, was told at various times that he was either "in a meeting" or "gone for the day." Left my name and number on my last call for him to get back to me. Wonder if his secretary even took it down.

Called the Superintendent and, before being transferred to her voicemail, heard the exasperated voice of the woman at the desk.

Seems clear to me that, if nothing else, we're doing a great job of distracting them.
5
Called several times to reach Principal Wiygul, was told at various times that he was either "in a meeting" or "gone for the day." Left my name and number on my last call for him to get back to me. Wonder if his secretary even took it down.

Called the Superintendent and, before being transferred to her voicemail, heard the exasperated voice of the woman at the desk.

Seems to me that, if nothing else, we're doing a great job of distracting them.
6
A very similar story last year in Alabama had a happy ending (the prom went on and the girls went in) after a public outcry:

http://www.examiner.com/x-17183-Birmingh…
7
I wonder if they have a tourist industry.

Because, if they do, a few well-written letters to the local paper about how you were thinking of going to [INSERT TOURIST ATTRACTION] might do a lot of good.
8
If someone can figure out a way to sponsor a private prom for HER and her supporters, I know you could gather support
9
If GLAAD or HRC were to underwrite a fabulous prom for students in the district, I'd bet most kids would participate. It would at least give those organizations some relevance.
10
@9- But then school districts would start deliberately banning gays so they could get out-of-town LGBT (and allies!) to throw their proms for them.
11
Just faxed a letter. I love using office resources for non-office work.
12
I'm hoping that the majority of the kids at that school are not as close-minded and prejudiced as the administration and school board, and instead of blaming her for prom being cancelled, will rally behind her and have their own prom where she'll be welcome.
13
@10 I thought most proms were pretty self sufficient and if anything raised money. I mean the tickets are not cheap and its not like you get drinks or elaborate food. How much can it really cost to rent a venue, staff it, and hire a DJ?

If schools really want their proms run as fundraisers for gay rights groups I don't see a huge problem.
14
The superintendent's voicemail box is allegedly full. Wish I could send a fax.
15
I sent off a letter, but I forgot to CC you. Oops. I was overly excited about getting the thing off.
16
We gotta get Ellen in on this!!! She could do a fabulous caravan-type-thingy, set up a posh mobile venue a la Hollywood tenting, and do this baby up right!!

Best damn prom rural Mizzizzippi's ever seen!!!

WE LOVE YOU, CONSTENCE!!
17
Another email address . . .

Mr. Rick Mitchell, Assistant Principal

rmitchell@itawamba.k12.ms.us
18
Do you wonder if Constance will make the cover of the Advocate?
Do you wonder where she’ll be in 4 years?

take a peek in the crystal ball...

In December 2005, Kerry Pacer, then 17, was featured on the cover of the national gay news magazine The Advocate as its "Person of the Year" — making her the youngest gay person to achieve that honor – for fighting for a "gay-straight alliance" at rural White County High School in Cleveland, Georgia.

where is Kerry now?

The Washington Blade’s Dyana Bagby reported:
But today she lives with her boyfriend, a construction worker, and their baby daughter, Marley, who turns 1 year old on Saturday.
"Well, she’s the most beautiful blue-eyed girl in the world and everybody tells me that so I’m not just being biased, I swear," Pacer said with a laugh.
"I love every minute of motherhood. It’s been a very big challenge, however I love it. I’ve just been trying to work and go to school and take care of my family," she said.
Pacer, who first came out as gay at age 12, is studying nursing at Gainesville State College and hopes becoming a registered nurse will give her a career that will support her family.
"It’s me and the baby and Shannon [Phagan], who is my boyfriend. We’re still together right now," she said. "And he’s doing really good; he’s helping out a lot and he’s really good with the baby." Pacer and Phagan were friends in high school and hung out with the same people.
"Yeah, well, we got together in high school. We started liking each other and started building a relationship. It was just fate we got together," she said.
19
I am from a nearby county,and I can't believe the actions or way of life (good or bad) could be that the prom would be canceled. As for the dress code,there is a dress code for every day school that students must go by the prom no different. My son's girlfriend is a student at this school affected by this.She along with all the other students knew the dress code. Regardless what you believe there needs to be more understanding that the kids have waited along time for this.Is this really how we want our kids to remember the last year or two of high school?
20
I think the school should be commended.... its nice to see a district standing up for whats right and not being bullied by the so called social groups...so these "girls" miss the prom.... proms are for dates not for pushing your social and political views down young adults throats.... tired of everyone telling me that I have to agree with everyone elses preferences.... if you dont like the flak you get then stay in the flipping closet......
21
I called and left a message at the District Office because of course the Superintendent was "busy", however I did get connected to the Principle and shared my personal view as a gay man that I would hope that he and his staff would work with the School District to refocus their energy on this issue. This is a PROM....a milestone that is something a young adult will and should experience in their way to adulthood. I asked that he work hard to remind the adults in this decision making process remember it is about the KIDS. It is and should be only about the KID! Their personal views/opinons/attitudes need to be put aside and work to give these young adults their prom. I told him that I would bet that the students were aware well before the date of the prom the orientation of Ms. McMillen and in today's progressive world, we need to understand that the youth are far more accepting of those who may be different.
22
I agree with poster #1 (http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archive…) I don't think the school district will change its decision. I think the best that can happen at this point is that someone at the district steps down or resigns over this public relations nightmare. Ultimately, the number of students in their schools ultimately remains the same. Your not going to find many people in that area willing to change their school district simply because of this. I know it's a huge issue for us, but to those students I'm sure it's a joke. I do want to clarify that I support Constance and her cause. I just think that living in the south as long as I have, I realize that when stubborn people in public authority make a decision they usually stick with it.
23
(Email sent 3/11/10)

To: Teresa McNeece

After first hearing of the above decision by your school board on national news this morning, and having read further, I am compelled to write to let you know of my disgust at this decision, based entirely upon controlling, restrictive, prejudicial sentiments.

Being appointed as "governors" and guardians of an educational system, you have a moral and civic obligation to protect the Constitutional rights, and psychological well-being, of ALL students who attend schools in your district.

This is an appallingly malicious act on your parts . . . and one that will have far-reaching effects on the "victim" of your short-sightedness, as well as the attitudes of her fellow students.

I can only shake my head at your combined ignorance and lack of tolerance/shame.

Please also see the following story, for a glimpse of the public opinion of your misguided decision:

We'd Rather Cancel the Prom Than Let a Girl Bring a Female Date

How dare you!

Carole Sarcinello
Mosheim, TN 37818
24

 


Care2.com members have also started a petition and ask anyone who is interested to sign:


 


Demand Equality & Respect for ALL St…


 


25
I agree with post #20,if these girls are wanting to stand up for what they believe in why have they not stood up before now? there is a dress code for school, prom is no different.There are alot of kids that are having to pay a high price just so these few girls get to play HERO. People talk about the south,if you don't like the way we live go somewhere else.
26
I don't think they ran out and secured the counsel of the ACLU. I think that they tried those avenues and were shut down. How is allowing a same sex couple to be one of HUNDREDS of couples cramming an idea down your throat? Hey, if YOU don't like it, if it bothers YOU, YOUR KID doesn't have to go to prom! How's that for privilege? I say if your kid isn't mature enough to be at a formal function without making an ass of him or herself (ie, behaving inappropriately towards another couple, being fixated on those who are "different") then maybe you got bigger problems than picking out corsages.

That's what slays me about the right wing. Let one same sex couple into a high school prom, and we're "cramming" an agenda down your throats. Have the second longest debate in senate history, and that's also crammed down your throats. Any time you don't like something and don't want to admit that you're being unreasonable, that you're just against it because you're against it, or that you might be wrong, a racist or a bigot, and someone's "cramming" it down your throat.

My friend's kid does that too. Every time she doesn't want to do something, you're "forcing" her to do it. So congrats, bigots. Ya'll are acting like grade schoolers.
27
@20:

You do realize that you just said:

"You don't get to force your opinion down my throat, this is what is right and this is what is going to happen..."

Did you pick that up from Rush? Hypocrite.
28
Homosexuality has a couple of problems.
1. It has always been illegal worldwide, with only random bouts of legalization in civilizations that were about to crumble. Prior generations didn't set the standard against homosexuality because they were prudes or wanted to limit peoples rights, but because they understood the negative impact that legalized homosexuality would have on a society. Today, when Johnny goes to sex education class he is shown the sodomy and felatio acts between homosexual men and women and encouraged to pursue that lifestyle as a legitinate option to the hetero life style. When I was young, I didn't see the potential problems. I figured as long as homosexuals didn't try to hit on me like I was a girl or a butch guy, then it was cool. The more homosexuality is legalzed the easier it will be to hit on you and legally pursue or harass you as a potential sexual partner and if you don't like it, tough, you best be quiet because you may be charged with a hate crime, pay a fine or go to jail if you become displeased with a homosexual admirer who wants to have sex with you. Remember, at the root of homosexuality is the selfish lustful desire of the wandering eye that takes pleasure in the frequent and casual sexual relatonship. Go to a few gays bars and check it out before you decide on laws that affect everyones rights. Now older, I realize I had not thought the matter through.

2. Homosexuality has always been considered immoral and perverted by the majority religious and non religious people world wide for the last 5000 years; All three great religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam state that homosexuality is perversion and must not be tolerated. One of them has got to be right! No parent would ever wish or encourage their child into the homosexual lifestyle unless they were sick. In all sharia Islam Muslim countries you are put to death if caught in homosexuality, in America, you don't get to go to the prom.

3.Our schools have a responsibility to obey the law of conscience and the greater good and this Principal shows more care for his/her students then he or she is receiving credit for.

4. The homosexual life style choice is based on the enticement of frequent and casual sexual encounters, which lack fidelity, depth of relationship and commitment. One partner always has a wandering eye that longs to lust after the the casual sexual encounter. So, a lifelong faithful heterosexual relationship is difficult, but a life long faithful homosexual relatinship is a rarity. Remember, marriage is where you refine your character not where you satisfy your needs.

5. The legitimizing of Homosexuality will remove an individuals right to free speech. You will no longer be able to say homosexuality is a perverted lifestyle that only brings harm to the individual and the society at large because to do so, makes it a hate crime that subjects you to jail. I am against anything that removes my right of free speech to peacefully state my opinion on any topic.

6. In conclusion, what do we do with our homosexual children and homosexual parents? We love them unconditionally but we don't sanction their life style choice as healthy or let their need of approval deprive the rest of us of our rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. So lets grant them their right to life, liberty and the pusuit of happiness in the bonds of matrimony under the banner of a civil union, (not the banner of marriage afforded to heterosexual couples), so they may profit from the legal, medical, property and tax benefits of that union. Lets keep homosexuality legal in the sense that two consenting adults can do whatever they want in the privacy of their own home but illegal on the books as harmful to the public welfare as discerned by our fore fathers for the last 5 millenia. Public intimacy for both hetero & homo should show the same decorum of discretion and care for the families and children of others. My free speech
29
Email sent on 03/20/10

Being a mother of five children, I find it disheartening that a school and it's district is blind when it comes to decisions that define who our children are. Whether children are gay, straight, black, white, hispanic, etc. should never be the basis of any decision made by our school districts. Yes, our school districts. We pay you.

I do not reside in your city, nor your state, but our children are the reason you have a job. And yes, there are other ways for children to receive an education outside the normal public school district. I know because my children are lucky enough to have that option. We, the parents, trust you with our children. This includes handling such issues with the utmost care. Our children and their beliefs should not have to mirror yours. That makes us unique and special.

The children are our future. And if you continue to try to harvest our childrens' beliefs to be wrong an immoral because you do not believe in them yourselves. Unfortunately, our future, yours as well, is never going to progress in a positive way. This is why hate is still amongst the entire world. Because of people who are blind and close minded such as yourselves.

I hope God can show you a more loving way to open your hearts and minds.
30
@28:

I am a 100% straight supporter of equal rights and freedoms. I've attended the NYC Pride parade for a few years running, go to bars that are predominately gay, and frankly find it just as easy to say no to a fellow male as I do to an undesireable female. I handle myself just as well with unwanted advances on both sides of the coin. I do not have to resort to a "hate crime", and if you stay within boundaries that apply to all human interaction you should not have to worry. Are there nutjobs on both sides? Absolutely. Don't look @ the extreme to deny the normal.

To spin your argument out a bit, lets go back 60 years when it was integration. There were carbon copy arguments (switch a few points) stating how the integration of race would lead to the downfall of society. It is invalid, homosexuality has existed longer than humanity. It is just as easy to say "No thank you, I'm not gay" to somebody as it will be if we embrace the fact that some people are different. Hell every gay man I see is one less person competing for a woman.

Oh, and where the hell did you get sex education? I got the "wear protection, no STDs, no teen moms" lessons in class and the "tab a to slot b" lessons from my family. I'm 23, so maybe something has changed there, but I sure as hell didn't get any lessons on oral or anal sex, vaginal either at that. Hell the closest we got to any of that was a condom on a banana so that us lunkhead dudes knew how to put one on right.

At the end of the day, this is an issue of fear uncertainty and doubt; just as it was with racial integration, as it was with giving women semi-equal footing (that battle still rages to this day), treatment of southerners during reconstruction, the freeing of slaves. It is human nature to lash out at what we are afraid of, and it is human nature to be afraid of what we do not know or understand. Conquer your fear, leave the doubt behind, and realize that we are all just people going through our daily grind. If someone wants to be gay, let em! If someone wants to be straight, let em!

My final point in my rather disjointed little rant is simple, this is America people. We are a land founded on the ideal that all men are created equally. There is no *, no footnote, or anything saying that some men are more equal than others. Lets drop the Animal Farm and embrace what our nation really can be. Why deny an American freedom?
31
To spin your argument out a bit, lets go back 60 years when it was integration. There were carbon copy arguments http://www.shoptiffanysilver.com/