They don’t seem thrilled about it, but it’s happening. Glimmers of progress:
Derrick Martin worried that he could be responsible for getting this year’ prom at Bleckley County High School canceled.
That’ because the 18-year-old senior is gay, and he plans to take his boyfriend to the year’ most anticipated dance.
Martin, an honor student who tutors at-risk elementary and middle school students after school, knew the move would be controversial for the town of about 5,200 residents.
At his high school, prom dates from outside counties must be approved in advance, so Martin went to his principal and asked.
“At first she said no, Cochran wasn’t ready for it,” he said.
Then last week, school officials said they have no policy in place against it.
“You don’t have the right to say no,” principal Michelle Masters said. “As a principal, I don’t judge him. I’m taught not to judge. I have to push my own beliefs to the background.”
The high school prom will have security.
Even if there is a backlash, both educators said they won’t cancel or change their plans for the prom. It would not be fair to the students, Pipkin said.
Martin said he could have settled for what he did last year and simply attend the prom with a female friend, but he didn’t want to do that this year. “It’ standing up for the rights thing, especially after the Mississippi canceled prom,” he said. “It’ senior prom. It’ pretty big.”
Very good. And what’s funny is that Cochran, Georgia will live through it all.
I will point out, anecdotally, that I’m aware of a gay-straight alliance in a private high school in Augusta, Georgia, which is not a liberal place, though it’s a hair more cosmopolitan (just a hair) than rural Cochran. It was started by a straight male student, which is pretty frickin’ awesome.