A teen in a small Maine town is claiming that his high school is denying his attempt to come out as gay in his yearbook quote.
According to WCNC, a local NBC affiliate, Zach Sides, a senior at Penobscot Valley High School, was told by the school's principal, Carol Marcinkus, that his yearbook quote about coming out of the closet was "offensive" and she did not want it to be published. The offending quote? "It's no wonder I dress so well, I didn't spend all of my time in the closet for nothing."
Sides isn't upset about being told what he can and can't say in the yearbook, but more with what the underlying message of Marcinkus' dictum was, telling WCNC, "It's what she said and why it couldn't go in the yearbook that really troubles me," Sides said. "I think she meant basically changing my mind about being who I am." Sides continued, saying that Marcinkus told him she was "personally offended" by the message's "connotation."
The interaction with his principal also lead to Sides coming out to his parents as well.
"Honestly, I never really wanted to come out. I just wanted to bring home my boyfriend and be like this is who I like and this is who I want to be with and just hope that everyone was okay with it," Sides said.
District superintendent Michael Wright told WCNC that he did not think the quote was "inappropriate" and "took care of the issue" when it was brought to his attention, meaning the yearbook will contain Sides' original quote. Further, he vowed to re-examine the "policies and procedures and guidelines for determining yearbook quotes." Marcinkus was unavailable to comment.
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