One More Letter To The Itawamba County School District

Comments

1
A copy of the letter I sent to Tony Wallace:

My Brother Killed Himself, because he was gay. Everyone in high school made fun of him for it. He stood on the tracks and let a train take him over, because he couldn't take it any more. You have brought violence on this girl. You have singled her out and made her the scape goat, even though she wasn't the one to ruin prom -- you were.

One out of twenty. One out of twenty students in your district will grow up to be gay. Some will lives of lies, others will be bold and come out, even as it leaves them orphaned from families who reject them and friends who are no longer able to look them in the eye. You certainly have the courage of your convictions, but this story is not one of the "vast homosexual agenda" trying to intrude into your small town affairs, this is the case of a single girl, a little different from all the others, who wants the exact same thing as everyone else in her class. I hope for your sake nothing happens to her.
2
Tony Wallace lists his employer as FL Crane & Sons on Facebook.

Here is the company information page:
http://www.flcrane.com/fulton_personnel.…

Here is his company email address: twallace@flcrane.com
3
Sweet young man. I think his letter was wonderful, and far more elegant than mine. I wish him joy, peace, and success.
4
Notecarder.com,

My condolences on the loss of your beloved brother. Here's a virtual hug, thank you for using his story to help Constance McMillen.

Best wishes,
k
5
it just hit 40,000 fans. it was amazing to keep pressing refresh as fast as i could and see the number jumping up by 3s and 4s every time.
6
constance is cute
7
@1:

I am so sorry for your loss, but with bold and true words like your own, perhaps there will be fewer brothers in coming years who will have to suffer the pain you know all too well.
8
I'm so grateful to the mass numbers of people who are reaching out to help this young girl. I can't even fathom what she's feeling right now... but I hope our messages of strength, love, and support leave her feeling much less alone.

Constance, if you ever read this, there is nothing wrong with you. You are a beautiful young woman with a lot of heart who got put into this shitty situation. Reach out, and there will be hands to help you. I promise.
9
I don't want to start any rumors but her facebook pages says that she graduated high school in 1985. This outs her at about 43 years old. Her page also says that she is single. Does this explain why Constance McMillen is such a distraction?
10
Single, female, and plays softball.
11
Dan, I was JUST coming in here to say the exact same thing. It's the first thing I thought when I saw what is apparently her facebook seconds ago. Her first college was apparently "Pensacola Christian", too.

And, I'm the one who contacted you about the Tupelo paper's editor info earlier. After I sent my letter, I received an email verifying my identity and requesting permission to publish. It was probably just some assistant that works overnight (about 11pm their time) who verifies everyone's letter, but there you have it.
12
Aaron Gettinger seems like such an upstanding young man. Well done.
13
This is what I wrote to McNeese. That last sentence really was a somewhat sarcastic jab, and I was tempted to put a winking smiley at the end, but I figured I'd stick with my overall professional tone. Heh.

Mrs. McNeese,

I'm writing to express my concern about the decision you have made to cancel the 2010 school prom. I'm certain that you have already had enough people castigating you for your apparent homophobia and bigotry, so my personal feelings on that aside, I will leave those statements for others to make.

I am sure that you really do enjoy your job and see yourself as helping children reach their goals and become productive members of society. That very well may be true, and is a very important position to have. However, my primary concern is that your reasoning for canceling this event is to avoid potential "distractions". I think what you really meant is that you wanted to avoid people from being offended.

The reason I take issue with this is that part of becoming an adult, of becoming part of larger society, is that these kids will see a multitude of things that offend them. They will be in contact with people of diverse backgrounds and lifestyles. Not only will these young adults be in contact with them, but they will be required to put their personal feelings and discomfort aside to attend college with them, go to work with them, live near and with them, and see them on a daily basis. By limiting their contact with people who are different from them and with whom they disagree, you are doing them a disservice. You are making them less employable and less effective. You are closing their minds to the world at large, since most places on this massive globe do not live and believe as do those who live in rural Southern towns.

It is because of this, ideology aside, that I strongly urge you to revoke your decision to cancel this prom. I am quite certain that you really are dedicated to educating these students, and I know that you would not want to intentionally short-change them or their futures. So do it for the children.

Sincerely,
Nikki Lawson

El Paso, TX
14
Dan, you mentioned that the Mayor of her town came out in favor of the school board's decision, but you didn't include the Mayor's contact info!
15
I don't care whether my letter makes slog - I'm so happy that 2000+ people have flooded Superintendent Mcknee's inbox!
16
@14-- The contact information for a mayor's office -- regardless of the town's size -- should be pretty easy to find.
17
Just a reminder, some of the board members, on their webpage ( http://www.itawambacountyschools.com/boa… ) used their work emails. This means we all know what companies they work for and could also raise the issue with their respective CEOs/HR departments.
18
10
My you've been a busy boy, Dan-
outing Massa on Behar's show
and now outing Ms. McNeece...
coming after Ashburn what We wonder is why are all these homosexuals in the news such terrible people?

(ps- does Perez know you are gunning to take his place as America's Queer Bitch Queen?...)
19
I also sent letters to the important people of the staff like the social worker and the positive behavior specialist- They should know better as they are health care professionals

Can be found here at http://www.itawambacountyschools.com/adm…

20
Just so everyone knows, until the onslaught from Slog readers, the last post on McNeece's facebook page was from Aug. 2007, so she may not even see al those notes
21
i tried calling mcneece but it just rang and rang- think she disconnected her voice mail?
22
I've sent letters and today will do voicemails, just gotta say:

Constance is the CUTEST little baby dyke! What a fabulous face to represent courageous gay youth. I would totally go to the prom with her and kick all kinds of (over 18 only) bigot ass!
23
Fulton, MS must be a real small town. As I was doing a little Facebook stalking this morning, I came upon an interesting connection. It seems Coach Mcneece may be related, not sure if by blood or marriage, to Constance. The admin for Coach Mcneece's page is what I assume is her daughter, Anna Mcneece. I did a friend search for other Mcneece's and it turned up one "Michelle Mcneece McMillen." A little further digging, show's her to be friends with "Madison McMillen." It appears Madison goes to IAHS, and is FB friends with Constance. I presume this to be sister or cousin relationship. I wonder what Thanksgiving dinner is going to be like this year...
24
NEW TERM: SOUL PEDOPHILE -
DEFINITION: One who strips a childs soul of their dreams through abuse, hatred and discrimination.

The whole Itawanba High school board are a bunch of SOUL PEDOPHILES!!!

i was a prom queen. I went to prom with a queen. Apparently as long as its gay guy/straight girl or gay girl/straight guy its ok? what about ugly girls/boys that weren't asked, can they go? this place is soul pedophil-ing all kinds of kids. NYC has been called to action on this (like we need to be called, we're there at the discrimination door with a casserole most times.......xo)
FIGHT ON!
25
Here's a copy of the letter I sent to Principal McNeece and several of the school board members:

I was disappointed to hear that rather than allow Constance McMillen to attend prom with her girlfriend, the school district canceled the prom. This move singles out Ms. McMillen for harassment and humiliation. I urge you to reconsider your decision, check your homophobia at the door, and repair the national reputation of your school that has been lost in taking the petty and bigoted action of canceling the prom for all students.

When I attended high school, thirty one years ago, nothing was ever commented on when I went to prom with a friend another girl who was an exchange student new to our school. Neither of us had a date, but still wanted to go to prom. In this day and age, canceling the whole prom because you think a lesbian couple would be a "distraction"? From the few comments I've seen reported from other students, the distraction is that YOU canceled the prom. I haven't seen any comments from students who state that they are bothered by Ms. McMillan being a lesbian. You are the ones who are distracted by your own homophobia. Following your logic, shouldn't the teens having premarital sex, also have been banned? Aren't they "distracting'"?
And how about all the negative national media attention your school district is receiving about your bigotry? Are you finding that "distracting"? A little uncomfortable? That discomfort is easily relieved...admit you made a mistake and have a prom for ALL your students.

Sincerely,

Eileen Gartland, RN

Baltimore Maryland
26
Writing outraged messages to the perpetrators is a feel good move, but I can't really believe the perpetrators are actually reading them instead of deleting them en masse. I would recommend contacting your local TV station and newspaper, as well as the national networks and favorite news programs. Having the national, and international, press descend on the town is going to have a bigger impact than any number of "filed" e-messages.
27
FYI the Facebook page has now reached over 61,000

Fracking amazing.
28
@ 26, it's feel good for us and a nuisance for them. It doesn't matter if they read them. The magnitude of the response should be enough to seriously disrupt their daily business and let them know of the support. Crashing servers, filling inboxes, tying up the fax and phones. It's a virtual protest, noone cares what the signs say, they are just pissed they can't get to where they are going becasue the streets are clogged
29
I heard about Constance story through the news media and I just watched the Ellen Degeneres show about her also. I can't believe in this day and age that people are still discriminated against because of who they are. I went to the schools website and found this on the website:

"The Itawamba County School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion,
national origin, sex, age or disability in the provision of educational programs and services
or employment opportunities and benefits".

Well I think they might want to go back and review their discrimination policy because I think if they read it then maybe they will see the BIG mistake that they made. All Constance wants is to go to her prom with the person that she loves, is that so bad? Every student should have the opportunity to participate in their school functions, like prom, no matter what.

I really do hope that the court sees that the decision that the school made was very wrong and let's Constance have a memorable prom.

I truly wish her all the best.

Terry Mintmier
Romney, WV