Constance McMillen, the teen who made national headlines when her request to take her girlfriend to the prom resulted in her high school dance being canceled, has been offered a second chance to experience this adolescent milestone: students at Tamalpais High School in Marin County, California have invited McMillen and her girlfriend to their prom.
McMillen’s opportunity to attend her own prom was absolutely quashed when a federal court declined to reinstate the prom at McMillen’s native Itawamba Agricultural High School, originally scheduled for April 2nd, after reactionary homophobic local officials canceled it in response to McMillen and her girlfriend’s “threatened” participation.
"We’re willing to stand behind her bravery, and accept her for who she is,” said Sarah Schwartz, a Tam High senior who launched the effort to invite McMillen to that school’s prom. "Being in my senior year, I know how important it is to have a prom," said Schwartz. "To have that taken away because the people around you don’t accept you didn’t feel fair at all. I felt I needed to do something."
Schwartz added that she was particularly moved by McMillen’s dilemma because two of her own friends have recently come
out. Schwartz is optimistically waiting for McMillen’s response to the invitation.
McMillen’s ordeal has garnished national attention and has already paved the way for positive outcomes in similar cases. For instance, in light of McMillen’s dilemma a high school in Cochran, Georgia, has decided to allow a gay senior to take his boyfriend to the prom this April.
Derrick Martin, an 18-year-old honor student at Bleckley County High School, told the Telegraph that he expected his request to be denied, coming from a town of only 5,200 residents, but was surprised by school officials when it was approved last week.
“You don’t have the right to say no,” principal Michelle Masters told the Telegraph. “As a principal, I don’t judge him. I’m taught not to judge. I have to push my own beliefs to the background.”