Marcel Neergard, an 11-year-old gay student from Oak Ridge, Tenn., is speaking out against the state’s infamous “Don’t Say Gay” bill, and one of its leading proponents in the Tenn. state House, Oak Ridge Rep. John Ragan.
The bill, which has languished in the state legislature for more than five years, proposes to limit all sexually related instruction to “natural human reproduction science” in kindergarten through eighth grade.
Marcel says the bill makes, and other kids like him, “feel unaccepted.”
“It would say straight is the only thing in life. Just the idea of it made me realize there are people out there who would not like me just because I’m gay. It made me feel really terrible. It made me feel unaccepted.”
Marcel wants StudentsFirst, a political lobbying organization, to take back its award to Ragan, whom they recently named “Educational Reformer of the Year.”
Ragan has previously compared homosexuality to pedophilia, prostitution, and murder, and proposed an amendment to the “Don’t Say Gay” bill that would have required educators to refer gay students for psychiatric care.
Watch Marcel’s video:
Marcel and his family have launched a petition asking StudentsFirst to rescind the award.
A longer version (video) of Marcel’s story can be seen here.