The Wright Perspective℠
Social Commentary from the C-Suite to Main Street℠
A Blog by Gary Wright II
The Prom Injunction for Constance
Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010
Today the international spotlight is shining on a county school district in Mississippi. A federal district judge has denied the request for a preliminary injunction forcing Itawamba County to hold its annual prom. The school canceled the April 2nd Prom instead of allowing lesbian Constance McMillen to bring her date to the event. Some kids are blaming Constance for "ruining their prom", but it is the school district who stopped the event. The injunction was requested by the American Civil Liberties Union and the court ruled that the school district violated her constitutional rights. McMillen has 30 days to amend her petition and file for damages.
Here is the official court document: Court Document
I'm sure the kids will have a prom with or without the support of their school. I've lived throughout Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi, and it is not easy being gay in "the South." Constance has received overwhelming support from across the nation, and now from around the world, after several appearances in the media. While on the Ellen DeGeneres show, Tonic awarded her a $30,000 college scholarship.
Constance - you did the right thing and I wish you the best!
-- Gary Wright II
UPDATE 7/20/2010: As a result of the lawsuit, Itawamba schools adopt a non-discrimination and anti-harassment policy covering sexual orientation and gender identity. They also must pay $35,000 in damages.
UPDATE 10/26/10: In addition to the $35,000 in damages, a federal judge has ordered the school district to pay for $81,000 in legal fees.