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5th Grader Banned From Giving Speech Supporting Marriage Equality

5th Grader Banned From Giving Speech Supporting Marriage Equality

A New York City fifth grader’s winning speech in favor of marriage equality will never be heard by his classmates after his school’s principal deemed it inappropriate.

Kameron Slade won a class competition and was scheduled to deliver his speech at PS 195 in Queens. However, because the speech was to be about same-sex couples, his principal told Slade he would be removed from the contest if he did not choose a different topic.

NY1 reports that after winning the class event, Slade was getting ready to deliver the speech for a schoolwide competition with the help of his mother and teacher. Here’s an excerpt from the speech:

“Like President Obama, I believe that all people should have the right to marry whoever they want,” Slade says in the poignant speech, which he delivered in full on NY1. He also speaks about his own experiences with a lesbian couple, who are friends with his mother.

“In conclusion, I hope that everyone understands how important it is to respect everyone for who they are,” he says. “I believe that same-sex marriage should be accepted worldwide, and that parents and teachers should start to discuss these issues without shame to their children.”

You can hear this entire, amazing speech by clicking here. Kameron Slade’s mother has raised quite a child!

As Think Progress points out, in addition to the fact that young people can easily learn about this issue from the President of the United States, many are bound to encounter same-sex families among their friends and classmates. To censor such topics is an attempt to erase gay and lesbian people from communities entirely.

Numerous studies have found that schools are safer for LGBT students when curricula are LGBT-inclusive.

California passed an LGBT-inclusive education bill last year, and a study released last week confirms that not only did LGBT students feel safer, but they also performed better academically and felt more connected to the school, their teachers, and their future.

Slade should be applauded, not censored, for doing for his peers what his school community refuses to do. What kind of lesson is this teaching him?

What do you think?

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Photo Credit: screenshot from Youtube video

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266 comments

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4:42AM PST on Jan 24, 2014

thank you for sharing

11:04AM PDT on Jul 25, 2013

How dare anyone stifle this child's right to free speech! His mother has done a wonderful job in raising a person who is smart, loving, and willing to speak his mind.

11:04AM PDT on Jun 30, 2013

It's normal life these days - get over it! :-)

7:54AM PDT on Jun 1, 2013

great kid!

8:56AM PDT on Apr 15, 2013

The kid was comfortable doing it; the principal, not. What a lesson this child can give to the latter!

6:17AM PST on Feb 9, 2013

What a nice kid!!!

6:23AM PST on Nov 17, 2012

What a great kid for wanting to make a speech like that!

2:13AM PST on Nov 17, 2012

i'm amazed that people have to condone a children's actions who speaks like an adult, whilst the idiots who are against such words are nothing more than ignorant bigots who are afraid of anything that is different to them. So much for the land of the free!

3:55AM PDT on Oct 4, 2012

When I taught pre-school, one of the items that you needed to address in order to pass your state and federal certification was 1) that you have books and items (dolls etc) displayed and set out in the areas that reflect the differences in family constructs- I was required to have books like "My Two Mommies", Weekend at Daddies,Hope and Will Have a Baby...etc...
These had to be out because the reality of different family constructs is here..
I had pre school students that had 2 Mommies, were children of surrogates and artificial insemination, children who had parents that were in jail, or in another country(India, Mexico etc). I had children who were victims of abuse and domestic violence, or children of addicts (including alcohol), I had books that were age appropriate and touched on each of these topics...I found that discussing the differences when they were brought up, left less chance for bullying due to ignorance...
This was all very important to me personally as well, because I remember a time when I was made fun of at school because my parents were divorced, and we lived with my Grandparents temporarily, I was made fun of because my Mom was a post-polio survivor and walked with a limp, I was made fun of because I had been an "army brat", I was called a Nazi because we had just moved back from West Germany.-these things happened, because the children of that time lived the life of 1 Mom, 1 Dad, a sister/brother, in a home that was reminiscent of the Cleavers. (from

9:31AM PDT on Sep 20, 2012

he should have been permitted to share it. they are basically telling him that his voice doesnt deserve to be heard, and that the things he believes in are not important

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