Main | Monday, May 05, 2008

"Boys Are Boys, Girls Are Girls"

In Racine, Wisconsin:
A Park High School student who thought he might have a shot at being prom queen could still get crowned king. School officials have said they won’t allow Uriel Gomez, 18, to stay on the girls’ ballot for prom court, which could have put him in the running for queen. Park students started voting for prom court early this week. With a little encouragement from Gomez and his friends, he ended up getting enough votes to get on the girls’ ballot.

Classmates had nominated Gomez for prom king, too. He might have to settle for a crown instead of a tiara. Uriel Gomez poses Thursday outside of Park High School. Gomez, a senior, is openly gay, and was on the ballot for both prom queen and prom king. On Friday, school officials said his name will not be allowed on the girls’ side of the ballot. “Right now it’s kind of confusing. All I know right now is, I’m on the guys’ side,” Gomez said.

Gomez, a senior at Park, insists the push to keep his name on the list of senior girls who might be chosen prom queen has nothing to do with grabbing “15 minutes of fame.” When Gomez learned he had enough votes that he might get elected to the prom court — on both the boys’ and girls’ sides — he asked a teacher if he could stay on the girls’ side. The teacher told Gomez, and his friend Matthew Harris, to talk with Jim Kerkvliet, the school’s activities director.

Park officials weren’t thrilled with the idea that Gomez wanted to run for prom queen, regardless of his reasoning. A former high school football star recently donned a skirt as a joke during a homecoming contest. Gomez didn’t see any difference. School officials did. “The school is standing with the regular policy,” Kerkvliet said. “It’s the same for everything. Boys are boys. Girls are girls.”
On Friday night I attended the Transgender Prom at the NYC LGBT Community Center. It would have been interesting to ask attendees about this.

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