Out of the mouths of babes ... or in this case, out of the mouth of an incredibly wise fifth-grader named Kameron Slade (who must have incredibly wise parents, too). The Queens, NY boy chose same-sex marriage as his topic for a school-wide speech contest, and guess what? Kameron's smart, sympathetic words (more on those later) won him the title of best speech in his class. Yay, Kameron! Unfortunately, when Kameron got to the next phase of the competition -- best speech in the whole school -- he ran into a bit of a snag.
A snag in the form of a principal with really messed-up ideas about the definition of "inappropriate." Yup, as you probably guessed, Kameron's principal thought the subject of same-gender marriage was an inappropriate one to discuss in front of the entire school. Kameron was given two choices: Change the speech, or drop out of the contest. Based on what you know about Kameron already, I bet you can guess which choice he made ...
That's right, he dropped out! As IF a fifth-grader with that much integrity would ever change his words to suit a narrow-minded authority figure. Again, hats off to Kameron's parents for raising a tolerant, thoughtful child who'll stand up for his beliefs. We need more kids like Kameron!
Anyway, as it turned out, Kameron was able to spread his message to a much wider audience -- by giving his speech a NY1 news camera.
You can check out the whole speech below, but here are a few of my favorite lines:
"Marriage is about love, support, and commitment. So who are we to judge?"
"If we judge people like this, this is a form of prejudice."
Telling a story about a day he spent with friends of his mother who are a lesbian couple: "These two women are in a relationship together ... they have a beautiful daughter, Kayla. This family seemed like any other family. They seemed happy and, best of all, they loved each other. I was curious to learn more."
"My mom is very open to me about same gender marriage. However, some adults may think it's inappropriate to talk about to children ... parents and teachers should begin to discuss these issues without shame to their children."
"In conclusion, i hope that everyone understands how important it is to respect other people for who they are."
He speaks with such adorable conviction, too:
If this kid ever runs for president, he's got my vote. Love is never inappropriate.
Do you think Kameron's school principal should have let him give his speech in front of the school?
Image via ThinkProgress TP/YouTube