14-Year-Old Gay Teen Defends Teacher at School Board Meeting

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Graeme Taylor certainly gave people something to talk about at a recent school board meeting in Howell, Mich. The brave 14-year-old student stood before the panel and made an inspiring speech in defense of teacher Jay McDowell, who was suspended without pay for disciplining two students for making anti-gay remarks in class.

Howell administrators said that the teacher infringed upon the students' First Amendment rights, but Graeme strongly disagreed. In his speech, he quoted Martin Luther King, Jr., brought up the town's discriminatory reputation and made reference to his own suicide attempt at age 9.
"This teacher, whom I fully support, finally stood up and said something," Graeme said. "I've been in rooms, in classrooms, where children have said the worst kinds of things, the kinds of things that help drive me to a suicide attempt when I was only 9 years old. These are the things that hurt a lot."

The courageous student then talked about the "silent holocaust" in our country in which an estimated 6 million gays commit suicide each year. He closed by asking the board to give the teacher his pay and reverse their disciplinary action.

"He did an amazing thing," Graeme said about Mr. McDowell. "He did something that inspired a lot fo people and whenever, ever, I have a teacher stand up for me like that. They change in my eyes. I support Jay McDowell and I hope you do, too."

We think you did something pretty amazing yourself, Graeme. Watch the Howell High student's speech below. What do you think about what Graeme did?


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