Lesbian teen, denied prom in Mississippi, to lead NYC gay parade
A Mississippi teen who fought a school ban on same-sex prom dates has gone from being ostracized to being honored.
Constance McMillen, 18, will serve as a grand marshal of the NYC Gay Pride March on June 27. She shares the honor with Judy Shepard, mother of Matthew Shepard, who was slain in a 1998 hate crime.
“I never dreamed so many people would support my fight to take my girlfriend to the prom, much less that I’d end up being asked to be a Grand Marshal at NYC Pride,” McMillen said in a statement. “I’m really honored and touched to be asked to be part of this celebration.”
McMillen’s school district canceled prom rather than let McMillen wear a tuxedo and bring her girlfriend. Earlier this month, a private prom was held to replace the traditional one, but McMillen was among only seven students who attended.
McMillen’s case gained national attention after the American Civil Liberties Union helped to challenge her Fulton, Miss., school district, which banned same-sex prom dates and allowed only male students to wear tuxedos.