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Prom Ban Violated Constance McMillens Rights, Mississippi Judge Rules - TimesOnline

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WillyT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-10 07:40 PM
Original message
Prom ban violated Constance McMillens rights, Mississippi judge rules
Jacqui Goddard, Miami

<snip>

School officials in Mississippi violated a lesbian students constitutional rights by banning her from dressing in a tuxedo and taking her girlfriend to a school dance, a federal judge ruled today.

Itawamba Agricultural High School will not, however, be made to reinstate the April 2 prom, which it cancelled two weeks ago because officials feared that Constance McMillens attendance could push peoples buttons.

In a 12-page ruling the district judge, Glen H. Davidson, denied Miss McMillens request for a preliminary injunction forcing the school to hold the event, saying that granting it would confuse and confound parents plans to host a private prom in its place.

To now require the defendants to host one as it had originally planned would defeat the purpose and efforts of those individuals, he wrote.

The case has caused ructions in the small town of Fulton, Mississippi, where Miss McMillen goes to school. The community is within the so-called Bible Belt, where homosexuality is frowned upon and Christian family values are paramount.

Miss McMillen, 18, told Judge Davidson at a hearing in Aberdeen, Mississippi, on Monday that pupils became hostile towards her after the school announced that the prom would no longer be going ahead, a move decided on by the school board after she challenged its demands that she wear a ballgown and find herself a male date.

I wound up leaving early that day because there were so many people giving dirty looks and whispering when I went by, cos most people thought I had caused the prom to be cancelled. A lot of people didnt like me very much, she said.

She has not been invited to the parent-organised prom, although Itawamba countys school superintendent assured the court that the party would be open to all students. Defendants have made representations, upon which this court relies, that all IAHS students including the plaintiff are welcome, Judge Davidson reminded organisers.

He has invited Miss McMillens lawyers to amend her case to seek compensatory damages, finding that the infringement of her constitutional rights has brought about a substantial threat that irreparable harm will occur.

Defendants have violated her First Amendment rights by denying Constances request to bring her girlfriend as her date to the prom, he ruled.

The American Civil Liberties Union, which brought Miss McMillens case, hailed the ruling a victory.


<snip>

Link: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_amer...

Wow... Somebody want to explain the difference in tone between the above and this thread from LBN ???

Link: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

:wtf:

:shrug:
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WillyT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-10 09:45 PM
Response to Original message
1. Kick !!!
:kick:
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RB TexLa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-10 09:48 PM
Response to Original message
2. And a Reagan appointed judge at that.
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riderinthestorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-10 09:54 PM
Response to Original message
3. She still hasn't been issued an invite to the private parent sponsored prom.
Sounds like nothing's changed or am I missing something?
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4lbs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-10 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Well... the school superintendent said that the private prom would be open to all students.
That tells me no invite needed.

Constance should just show up with her girlfriend, in a tuxedo.
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riderinthestorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-23-10 10:36 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. And the school supt is involved in issuing invites to the "private" prom?
In what way?

By it's very definition, it's a private party. The school supt has no say over who is invited or not.
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