Being a Gay Teen in Mississippi Sucks


teen photo banned from yearbook for wearing tuxedo
Ceara Sturgis
Another Mississippi high school is discriminating against a GLBT teen, and luckily the ACLU has filed a lawsuit letting them know they can't get away with that kind of behavior.

This time Ceara Sturgis, who has always dressed like a boy, was cut out of the yearbook because she wore a tuxedo in the senior photo. (You'll remember Constance McMillan, who won her lawsuit when she was told she couldn't go to the prom in a tuxedo.)

Sturgis has gone to school at Wesson Attendance Center since she was in kindergarten, and now her yearbook shows no evidence of the student graduating. That's shameful, and it's discrimination.

On picture day Ceara Sturgis had the drape or tux option, and while she tried to wear the drape, she was so uncomfortable her mother asked the photographer if she could instead wear the tuxedo. The photographer agreed, but the principal said she couldn't appear in the yearbook. When the yearbook came out, not even her name was published with the rest of her class.

Seems like the principal just wished Ceara Sturgis would disappear. Unfortunately for him, the ACLU took Ceara's case and is claiming discrimination under Title IX, which prohibits discrimination based on sex or sex stereotypes. Let's hope this is an easy win for the ACLU, but most importantly for Ceara and other teens who don't fit into the "norm" the Wesson Attendance Center principal feels is appropriate.

You can show your support for Ceara on Facebook.

Do you think Ceara Sturgis should have been included in her high school yearbook?


Image via Facebook

high school, in the news, teens


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Absolutely she should have been in her yearbook!  This is totally outrageous.  :( 

DRobi... DRobinson

This article is so biased!  I agree with the principal.


sstepph sstepph

Yes, she should have been in the yearbook. Seriously, what is wrong with people anymore. Everyone deserves the same treatment as everyone else. Its sick how people are.

jeann... jeannesager

@DRobinson: it's biased because she, gasp, promotes equality?

Ibelo... Ibelongtojesus

She should be in the yearbook.  They tried something like this in the HS that I graduated from.  A girl in the graduating class was highly allergic to light so she got her picture taken by someone else besides the school photographer.  She was told that because it was not the photographer the school hired and she was not wearing the drape she could not have her picture in the yearbook. That id she were to want it in there that she would have to have her picture retaken by the photographer.

TLParker TLParker

@DRobinson:   How is the principal  even close to being correct? Regardless of his feelings towards homosexuality, there are rule and guildlines put in place. And as a professional, if he can't do as those rules (more like LAWS) state, then he shouldn't be in the position he is in.

devon... devon7277

I'm actually living in Mississippi right now and both of these stories have truly bothered me. It is completely unfair to not allow a girl to wear a tuxedo whether she is GLBT or not. She has just as much right to be in the yearbook as everyone else. Unfortunately, some of the folks down here in the bible belt are ultimately against any value different from their own. I am a Christian but I don't see anywhere in the bible that it is okay to shun anyone. In fact, I believe it says we should even love our enemies. 

hotic... hoticedcoffee

Horrible and ignorant behavior on the principal's part.  Hopefully he'll get properly schooled by the ACLU!

Phils... PhilsBabyMama

Ahhhhh!  This is infuriating!  How does Ceara wearing a tux hurt anyone?  Give me a break!  She worked hard to make it through high school and deserves to be able to look back at a photo of herself in the yearbook later in life.  I can't stand ignoramuses like this principal.

asmcb... asmcbride

I'm with DRobinson on this. No other girls get an option of what to wear for senior pictures and NOBODY is "comfortable" in the stupid draps. I think wearing the tux was just a way of grabbing attention.

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