Constance McMillen is a homosexual. She is also a senior in a public high school in Mississippi, and as such she was looking forward to her senior prom. She wanted to bring a date, and because of her lifestyle, she wanted to bring another young lady and she wanted to wear a tuxedo instead of wearing a prom gown.
She claimed that all she wanted was the rights that all of her heterosexual classmates had, and it touches on the very problem Christians have with the gay rights movement.
It’s Not About Equality
This type of situation is always pictured as a fight for equality. The logic is pretty convincing. Here’s a girl that likes girls. She doesn’t want to go dance with a boy, and every other person there is probably with someone that they’re attracted to physically1. So why can’t she bring someone that she’s attracted to physically.
Oh, and since one of the other couples gets to wear a tux instead of a dress, why can’t she do the same?
The thing is, she is not being treated unequally—every girl there has to bring a male escort2. Every girl there has to wear a prom gown.
What she is seeking is for the school’s blessing, the affirmation of her choice. No girl that has come to the prom herself is going to have her picture taken. They aren’t going to want to draw attention to themselves. This girl wants the school to look on approvingly of her choice.
The School Is In a Tough Spot
Because of our current school system, most students attend a public school. If the school or community has a value system that approves of a given lifestyle, or disapproves of the lifestyle, there is a responsibility to be tolerant because the school operates with public funds. Public funds need to serve the public.
Therefore, it’s not surprising that many schools have decided to acquiesce to the requests of homosexual students in the past because there isn’t a good leg to stand on when it comes to not allowing people to participate in their events.
The move by the Itawamba Agricultural High School to cancel the prom rather than allowing Miss McMillen to bring her escort and dress in a tux was a novel one because it basically called the ACLU’s bluff.
It’s hard to make the emotionally laced argument that there is unequal access—something that isn’t as hard to see, and yet seems like it’s wrong regardless of the soundness of the argument—if no one is granted access.
Very Little Recourse
And it looks like the school will win this one. Regardless of which side of the argument you find yourself on—supporting Miss McMillen or supporting the school—there is no argument to be made that she is being prejudiced against.
The best argument there is that the prom was cancelled because of the school’s reaction to her request, but there are multiple problems there:
- Is that the only reason? If the school were talking with McMillen and then she took it to the ACLU, the press, and everyone to try to bully the school into allowing her to do what she wished, then they could rightly say that the cancelled the dance due to the circus that surrounded the discussion rather than because of her sexual proclivities. You could say that her preference was the root of it, but you couldn’t say that it was the reason.
- Equality. In some school districts, schools have banned some extra-curricular activities because a Christian group, a hate group, or some other unpalatable group sought equal access to facilities, and rather than have to deal with it, the school has simply refused all access.
- The school doesn’t have to have a prom. There’s nothing in mandates from the state that say there has to be a prom, or even a prom equivalent. Therefore, there’s little grounds to force the school to have one.
If It Were Anyone Else
And here is the last point—if there were one Christian boy that went to the prom and wanted to enforce a standard of modesty on the women there that they all had to refrain from showing too much skin, he would be told to go have his own dance.
The point is, with the homosexual movement, it’s not enough to have freedom to do as you choose and to have people tolerate your choices. It’s acceptance.
Homosexuals want people to affirm their choice, and they do this by forcing others to accept them the way that they are—regardless that there is a big percentage of individuals that believe that their activity to be sin. They want tolerance, but do not grant it themselves.
Nothing is stopping them from having their own dance, their own prom, and to convince all their supporters in the school system to boycott a dance at the school and have their own. Instead, they decide that they must attempt to force the school to play by their rules and insert themselves, their identity, etc. into the event under the guise of equality.
And that’s the true inequality.
- However, I would also bet that there are a fair number of people that attend the prom “stag” or that go with a friend so that this part of the argument isn’t really that strong…
- Barring the aforementioned option of going alone or meeting up with friends.