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It's a very regular thing to see a comment on an LGBT story here on Daily Kos or elsewhere that goes something like this: "I'll be glad when this isn't news anymore."
I confess to sometimes being irritated when I see this comment, even though I understand (and share) the sentiment. I'm not sure why the comment annoys me, except that--our incredible and lightning-paced cultural and legal victories notwithstanding--we're still so far from a world in which coming out is not a big deal. I'm not convinced we'll ever get there. I do get it, though, and the idyllic, hypothetical world in which we can all just love whomever we love with no societal expectations or assumptions has quite a bit of appeal. But that's not where we are in this lifetime.
However, as The New Civil Rights Movement points out, stories like this give one hope that maybe, just maybe, we're a little closer than we think to a time when a gay couple can be a non-story. Our non-story story tonight takes place in the small-town West Virginia Musselman High School, where senior Michael Martin and Logan Westrope, high school jocks, got to go to prom...with each other. Perhaps rural West Virginia is the last place you'd expect to find signs of progress on the LGBT front, but now is the time to shed those assumptions. Outsports has the original story:
It's prom season at high schools across the country, a special time that until recently has been reserved for straight student couples. A sign of growing acceptance and change took place in West Virginia on Saturday night.
The Mussleman High School senior prom was held at The Heritage Hall in Inwood, West Virginia. Among the couples attending were Michael Martin, a Mussleman senior, and his boyfriend Logan Westrope, who attends Hedgesville High School.
Michael was a four-year starter on his school's soccer team, making all-state as a goalie. He is also an all conference swimmer and tennis player. He told his coming out story on Outsports in December, in what was our most-viewed story of 2014. Michael will attend Wilson College in Pennsylvania this fall, major in Environmental Sustainability and play soccer. Logan plays tennis for Hedgesville High School. He will attend Penn State University and major in meteorology. The two have been dating for four months.
Logan tells Outsports about the special night:
We knew this would be a night to remember. We walked in, checked in with our tickets, and were off to have fun! At first we were both a little hesitant to hold hands, not knowing how the rest of the student body would react. But after a short while, we were always next to each other and danced together the whole night.
At the moment when the slow songs played, we would just stare into each other's eyes and would think of how lucky we are to have each other.
But surely that's not the whole story. I know what you're thinking, because it's what I thought. There must be protests outside, fuming letters to the editor about the gay agenda
at Musselman, or a school administration unwilling to allow such an occurrence at their prom. At the very least, the couple must have been heckled and harassed, right?
No, no, no, and no. As The New Civil Rights Movement puts it:
In West Virginia, the school board did not step in to stop them. No concerned parents stormed the principal's office. No bully spilled punch on the couple, called them names, or cornered them in the bathroom for the purpose of covert violence. No Christian student group threatened a boycott, or held a prayer vigil, or stood outside with a God Hates Fags sign.
I am also happy to report, not a single heterosexual couple was reported harmed by the proximity of gay prom guests - though Pat Robertson hasn't weighed in yet, so he may still be thinking up something nasty to say.
In short, the only reason this is a story is because Outsports, other gay outlets, and your diarist tonight are making
it a story. Although, in our defense, the non-story aspect itself is a story given the times we live in.
More on the night from Logan:
We didn't hear any negative comments about Michael and I. A lot of people would come up to us (especially the girls) and say, "You both are so cute!" or "You guys look great!" Once we left the prom, I remember Michael saying to me in the car, "Logan, this is our last prom and I'm so glad I got to spend it with you." I couldn't have asked for a more perfect night.
If this non-story story doesn't make you smile and perhaps bring a tear of joy to your eye, I give up. I'll echo the comments that have long irked me: Here's to many more LGBT non-story stories. We do have a long, long way to go, as we always do. But we're getting closer.
May 1, 2015
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I think this comment by EdMass from SeaTurtle's diary Wildstein to Plead GUILTY today on Bridgegate! Ding Dong !!!... is not only TOP COMMENT material but an OUTSTANDING COMMENT.
I'm nominating Lilyvt's comment as the best reply to Chris Christie's BS.
April 30, 2015
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