American Humanist Association, Green Day, and Lance Bass Help Throw Second Chance Prom for Constance McMillen

The last time Constance McMillen attended an alternative prom, it turned out to be a big joke on her since just about everyone else besides her was at the *real* alternative prom.

Why the deception?

Originally, Constance wanted to bring her lesbian girlfriend to Prom and the school refused to let her come. When an alternative prom was planned, they lied to Constance so she wouldn’t go there.

But now, her supporters are putting together an *amazing* prom that is all-inclusive.

The Second Chance Prom will be held on May 8th in Downtown Tupelo, Mississippi.

It is being sponsored and paid for by the American Humanist Association (and philanthropist Todd Stiefel), the band Green Day, former *NSYNC member Lance Bass, celebrity chef Cat Cora, and tonic.com.

The Second Chance Prom will feature dinner for guests, live entertainment, a ceremony to honor outstanding youth in Mississippi, booths highlighting organizations striving for LGBT equality and celebrity guests…

“We’ve very pleased to be able to support and promote LGBT equality alongside other sponsors,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. “We’re proud to be standing on the side of love and acceptance instead of fear and prejudice, and we hope that the event will bring appreciation of the diversity within our society and encourage others to embrace it as a positive value that can continue to forge progress for all Americans.”

“I hope this Second Chance Prom will be an opportunity to get beyond recent negativity and provide a celebration that shows the benefits of an inclusive outlook,” said Speckhardt.

No word on whether Green Day and Lance Bass will actually perform at the event but what an incredible show of support from everyone involved.

It’s things like this that make me proud to support the AHA.

I hope Constance gets to have a real party this time and that other students from the school put aside their pride and attend, too. There’s nothing wrong with an all-inclusive prom and it’s a wonderful way to put a spotlight on those who would foolishly refuse to let a lesbian attend the “official” prom.

  • http://herwholeidealism.wordpress.com/ Her Idealisticness

    That is fantastic news. I am so pleased at the amount of support she has been shown despite the horrific way she has been excluded and treated. Go go AHA ^_^

  • Sackbut

    I noticed an article about this in the Alabama news. In contrast with other articles, this article claims it’s a prom for gay students. The text of the article makes the slightly less distorted claim that it’s “open to everyone but geared toward gay students.”

  • Hermes

    So, who gets the movie rights? Will it appear from Disney, Warner Brothers, or Universal movie, or from a smaller studio?

    [ Don't you just love a good 'bad guys get their just deserts, and hero gets her girl' story? ] :-)

  • Hermes

    [ BTW, Constance, if you are reading this ... ghost writers are available. Like me. :-) ]

  • http://www.givesgoodemail.com Givesgoodemail

    Hooray! The good guys win, Constance gets an eyeful of what the real world can be like (and is richer for it), and Mississippi is reminded that it cannot insulate itself from morality. Again.

    Now let us hope the courts fry those responsible for the “secret” prom.

  • @Dianne_

    I hope Dan Savage from the Lovecast will be invited to make a speech as he has been a tireless campaigner for Constance’s rights.

  • http://www.frommormontoatheist.blogspot.com Leilani

    I am so glad we live in a country where there are people who refuse to let the bad folks win. It’s not an everyday thing, and it’s wonderful!

    I love the AHA and I love Green Day and this makes me love them all the more!

    What great news to wake up to on a beautiful Saturday morning. :)

  • Ron in Houston

    That is so awesome. It’s great that a number of busy and famous people have taken the time to do this.

  • Chris

    As I’ve said before, she shouldn’t have to change, her school should.

    An additional prom is a cool idea, if it really is in addition to her own school accepting her.

    But as long as her own school doesn’t accept her, this is a consolation prom, and that seems like a step backwards to me.

  • Sackbut

    I agree this is a wonderful thing. I hope lots of people show up; it would be very unfortunate if only a few did.

    I am bothered that some news sources in the South are making this out to be a prom for gay students. I am concerned that straight students, reading these reports, would get the impression they are not welcome.

  • http://stomatopoda.blogspot.com Roy

    Excellent. It’s great to step back and remember that people are basically good.

  • http://noadi.etsy.com Noadi

    Awesome! And I hope Cat Cora’s involvement is in providing food.

    I too also hope straight students show up, this prom is for them too. Show that everyone gets to have a good time and it doesn’t matter who you are attracted to at all.

  • Stan

    “You guys lied to me about where the prom was? Well FUCK YOU, we’ve got Cat Cora!”

  • http://infophilia.blogspot.com infophile

    I really hope that either Green Day or Lance Bass will be performing there (or both). That more than anything else will be a big kick in the teeth for the bigots who wanted to avoid Constance. They can either put their bigotry aside and tacitly admit they were wrong, or they can miss out on one of the best proms in history. But if even they can’t make it, all the money pouring in is sure to make this simply awesome. I don’t know if it’ll make it up to Constance and her girlfriend for all they’ve gone through, but it’s a start.

  • Jeff Dale

    I am bothered that some news sources in the South are making this out to be a prom for gay students. I am concerned that straight students, reading these reports, would get the impression they are not welcome.

    That may actually be the point of the slant in reporting. We’ve already seen the depths to which many in that area will sink (either openly or by silent consent) in order to resist normalization of GLBT. Painting this event as “for” gays is close enough to plausible (a distortion that will be believable to the locals, as opposed to a blatant contradiction of fact) that the “news” sources can get away with and still seem like “news” to the local audience.

  • Demonhype

    leilani: Me too! I was thinking that as I read this and getting excited to tell my brother “get ready to love Green Day even more!”–and then he calls! GREEN DAY RULES!

    infophile: Definitely. It’s great that they’re involved in sponsoring the prom, but to perform at it would be the ultimate spit-in-the-eye FU to the bigots “well, you had your precious ‘traditional’ prom with all your ‘traditional’ values and no ‘faggots’ or ‘munchers’ making you clutch at your pearls or swoon on your fainting couches with their blatant existence, and we had the FUCKING ULTIMATE PROM with GREEN DAY!”. (Also Lance Bass, but I cant’ get quite as excited about that, sorry. :D ) I never went to prom, never had any inclination to do so, and have never regretted it, but if they’d had GREEN DAY, nothing would have kept me away!

    I’m assuming they’re opening it to students from other schools too, though, since I wouldn’t entirely count on the kids from that particular school alone. That was my first thought, and also my mother’s first thought. “Well, if the whole school was solid enough in their bigotry to keep the other prom a secret, why would anyone come to this one?”. Of course, I suppose one should never underestimate the synchophantic tendencies of the average teenager. There were plenty of douchebags in my own HS who would have gladly foregone their douchebaggery for a night for the chance to attend a private concert with…well, nearly any band with a sufficient amount of celebrity. *snort* Lousy synchophants.

  • muggle

    It’s just too bad she sees fit to in turn look down her nose at having to party with the learning disabled as she called them.

    No, I’m not getting over that any time soon. If anyone should have known better, it should have been someone who’d been through the shit she had.

    I am starting to wonder why she and her date asked if they could go versus just showing up and filing a discrimination suit if thrown out. Has she ever said? It is certainly paying off handsomely.

  • Nerdette

    @ Muggle

    If her prom was like mine (and all other school dances thank you had to buy a ticket for), you had to name your date before buying the two tickets. That may have been where this whole thing started.

  • Angie

    This is great!

  • http://thenaturalbuddhist.blogspot.com JohnFrost

    @Muggle

    Wtf? Can you provide a link, please? Everything I’ve heard, Constance was incredibly sweet regarding the learning disabled that were sent with her.

    Re: new prom

    Constance turned down every offer to put on a prom by outside organizations before–does anyone know if they actually asked her if she wanted this one? I agree with what someone else said; if the kids in her school were all such douchebags that not a one of them stood up and said “this is wrong” about the secret prom, are they really going to want to go to this one? And would Constance want to go with them?

  • Lost Left Coaster

    @Muggle – Constance did not turn down her nose at her learning disabled classmates. She noted to the media that the people who sent her to the “fake prom” had also sent several students with learning disabilities to that event as well, and she noted that she and the learning disabled students had all been treated in a similarly cruel manner by that fake prom situation.

    I have a feeling that you’re just trying to hate on Constance, especially since you’re also grasping at straws to somehow criticize her for having wanted to take her girlfriend to the prom in the first place. As Nerdette noted above, as a rule you have to give the name of your date for dances such as this; therefore Constance probably had no way around initially telling the school that she planned on taking her girlfriend.

  • http://www.banalleakage.com martymankins

    I love to read stories like this. And congrats to Green Day and Lance Bass and the AHA for their support.

  • Hybrid

    Great story, love it.

  • Vas

    @ Muggle,
    Man are you ever wrong on this one. I have been following this story very closely on many sources, really I have put a lot of time into understanding what was and is going on with this. Your claim that Constance “sees fit to in turn look down her nose at having to party with the learning disabled as she called them.” is completely disingenuous and miss-characterizes Constance’s statement and position to a shocking extent. You seem, from what I know of you, a reasonable and thoughtful person, however on this issue you seem to be woefully under-informed. Constance has never made any public statement that in any way disparages students with learning disability nor is there any inference that she somehow views these students as lesser people, none, at all.

  • http://rubyleigh.blogspot.com Ruby Leigh

    I wish we had more information about how Constance actually feels about all of this.

  • Emi

    Amongst other things Dan Savage asks all of us who support Constance and believe she has behaved with spectacular maturity and dignity throughout this ghastly s***storm to email the school supervisor and principal and express our anger at the school’s behaviour. Their email addresses are tmcneece@itawamba.k12.ms.us and twiygul@itawamba.k12.ms.us.

    Be polite but to the point. There’s no reason why they should get away with this.

  • Staceyjw

    I am of a different opinion.

    If Green Day or Lance do play, it should be open to all high schoolers OTHER THAN the ones who conspired to keep her out of the normal prom. Why let them have 2 fun parties, the special, celebrity one being put on purely because of their hatred? Its like saying “Go ahead and treat people shitty, when others pick up the pieces of the mess you made, you’ll still be invited!”

    I know it shouldn’t have been a “consolation”, but I think its a little late for that.

    A better prom shouldn’t be a REWARD for RUDNESS and HATRED. Treating a school full of kids that behaved in such a horrible way to something so special is just WRONG.Inclusion is great, but not in this situation. Do you really think they will change their minds? Or just go anyway and be bitchy all night.

    Its too late for everyone to win this one, let’s not show bigots they’re actions are acceptable.I’m pretty sure they can make a slammin party for Constance WITHOUT those jerks.

  • ed

    LOL – Impossible you cannot be “friendly” without an ethics system – which GOD provided to you

    so there!

  • http://brazilbrat.blogspot.com/ James Smith João Pessoa, Brazil

    I am happy to see that there are people with ethics and kind hearts. Too bad they are not the theists but atheists.

    I was not at all surprised when they lied about the prom. Deception, distortion, and lies have always been the modus operandi of theists. Why should this have been any different?

    These religious bigots are really very disgusting examples of human beings but very typical of the religious reich.

  • sove

    @muggle
    “I am starting to wonder why she and her date asked if they could go versus just showing up and filing a discrimination suit if thrown out. Has she ever said? It is certainly paying off handsomely.”

    It was probably in response to a memo sent out by the school on Feb 5th stating that guests MUST be of the opposite sex:

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=30617897&op=1&o=global&view=global&subj=357686784817&id=1256443932

    so Constance did the right thing and went through the proper channels in asking permission…and still got punished. What should she have done?


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