Friday, August 15, 2008

Parents of Dead Gay Boy Blame School

Talk about a lose-lose situation for the school:

The family of a gay teenager who was fatally shot in class blames the school district for allowing their son to wear makeup and feminine clothing to school — factors the family claims led to the death.

The parents and brother of 15-year-old Larry King of Oxnard filed a personal injury claim against the Hueneme school district seeking unspecified damages for not enforcing the dress code, The Ventura County Star reported...

King was a ward of the court and living at a shelter for abused, neglected and emotionally troubled children at the time of the shooting.

If they didn't let him "express his individuality", they'd be accused of being homophobic. I have no doubt there were well-meaning people at that school who "wanted to help" that boy and who lobbied to let him dress as he did.

What are the parents of the shooter thinking, not only of their son but also of themselves?

How guilty must the parents of the dead boy feel, considering where he was living at the time of his death?

I can find nothing good in this story. Nothing but screaming, wretching sadness.

How is it that some people can think homosexuality is worth killing over?

I've said it before and I'll say it again: tolerance. Not necessarily acceptance, but tolerance. Live and let live. Why is that such a difficult proposition for some?

Update: I called it perfectly, at least according to the parents' suit. Via a link at Joanne's site:

Assistant Principal Joy Epstein, the only person named in the complaint, is accused of encouraging the boy to wear "women's clothing, shoes and makeup." She created an environment of "perceived safety" for King when "in fact she could not and did not protect Larry from the threats and ultimate death," the claim says.

The school should have enforced the dress code on everyone, although I wonder if it forbade boys from wearing makeup.


Scott McCall said...

obviously he cares more about making money from his son's death, than grieving over the death appropriately.

just another stupid thing that stupid parents think they can blame other people for their lack of enforcing rules. why didn't he stop his son from dressing that way, if he believes so strongly the school should do it? the school does one thing: teach academics. it is not suposed to interfere with students' lives outside of school....parents need to realize this idiot.

Papa Frank said...

You are right Darren. This is sadness on every side and every level.

Anonymous said...

"I've said it before and I'll say it again: tolerance. Not necessarily acceptance, but tolerance. Live and let live. Why is that such a difficult proposition for some?"

The newsweek article:

has quite a bit more detail.

It probably isn't a big surprise, but this isn't just an issue of Larry quietly minding his own business and then Brandon killing him out of the blue.

There was a *lot* of activity that would have been considered sexual harassment if a girl had been involved. And as such, I think the school would have shut it down before anyone got killed.

Sigh :-(

-Mark Roulo

Ellen K said...

In our area last year, a gay teen sued in court to be allowed to wear a dress and makeup. So what's the answer? Do we let kids do anything they want in school for fear of being seen as intolerant? Or do we enforce rules and if someone gripes refer them to the student handbook for student expectations? As someone who has been threated with a lawsuit for taking up a cell phone during a test, I would like to know the limits.

adsoofmelk said...

Hey, I think it's fairly easy: Let students have a one-size-fits-all dress code and abide by it -- but this idea that the school is to blame for "letting" the student dress the way he CHOSE to dress is absurd.

Darren said...

I agree, Adso.

And while I've never read the book, I loved the movie. Sean Connery is awesome. =)