Teacher Suspended For Allowing Student To Play Gay Marriage Song In Class
November 29th, 2012
My Fox DetroitÂ has reported that a teacher in South Lyon, Michigan has been suspended for allowing a student in her class play a â€śpro-gay marriageâ€ť song last Wednesday.
Susan Johnson, an eighth grade performing arts teacher at Centennial Middle School, was asked by a student if he could play the songÂ Same LoveÂ by rapper BenÂ Maclemore. Johnson asked the student questions about the song to ensure that it didnâ€™t include violence or profanity, and he said that it did not, so she allowed it. Â Once Johnson realized the songâ€™s topic matter, she thought that it was something her students could learn from. However, not everyone agreed. Another student went to the school office and complained.
â€śThis is one of the things in my school that weâ€™re trying to practice and weâ€™re trying to instill in our students is tolerance to diversity.â€ť
Johnson was initially told that she was suspended indefinitely without pay, but in a closed door meeting later, the principal and assistant superintendent informed her that her suspension is only three days, two of them without pay. Johnson says she was â€śparalyzedâ€ť and â€śvery disappointed in the bias, the bigotry that I feel that theyâ€™re really hiding behind.â€ť
â€śI really love my kids and I never want to hurt them, but I also know that thereâ€™s a lot of bullying and thereâ€™s a lot of gay bashing and racial issues going on in our country and I want the kids to feel comfortable in my class no matter who they are.â€ť
The paperwork that Johnson received from the school stated that the song had controversial content (homosexuality, religion, political views and a sexual slur), and that Johnson should have asked permission first. The school has refused to comment. Assistant Superintendent Melissa Baker said â€śNo one is going to have a comment for you. Â We donâ€™t go on camera here in South Lyon.â€ť
Johnson toldÂ Fox DetroitÂ that the ACLU and the LGBT support group called Affirmation are involved.
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