Gay-rights supporters from across the country are offering to buy everything from boutonnieres to dinner for a Bleckley County High School senior who was granted permission to take his boyfriend to the prom.

Derrick Martin asked his principal this year if he could take another male to his senior prom, set for April 17. At first school officials told the 18-year-old that the town of Cochran, with a population of 5,200, wasn’t ready for it. But, the high school only had a policy that barred bringing a date older than the age of 21, so school officials subsequently told Martin they granted his request.

Martin said he got 54 messages Tuesday on Facebook.

“I appreciate it,” he said. “I was speechless that they said they would buy me dinner or buy me a tux in case someone messed mine up.”

Martin said he pushed to take his boyfriend to the dance after hearing about a girl in Mississippi who asked to take her girlfriend to the prom. Her school eventually canceled the dance rather than allow them to attend together.

“Maybe (other gay students) will think if Bleckley County will let them, maybe my school will,” Martin said.

But because of the media attention, Martin’s parents have kicked him out and the teen is staying with a friend.

COMMENT: Well, of course, you all know what is coming, and quite rightly so too.

For being a great kid and a real gentleman,
young Derrick is, most definitely, our...


And shame on his parents. I suppose they would prefer a bad-mannered, stroppy, drug addled, truanting, gangsta son to a hard working, immaculately turned out, gay one. Well, I'll happily adopt him if his folks don't want him. He looks like just the sort of son who would look after his parents in their old age.



  1. THey don’t kick him out because he’s gay, though. No, they kick him out because of the media attention he garners by not staging a protest, but asking and getting permission to be honest about who he is with his classmates and at his school.

    This is absolutely crazy. What I read in this article is that he was out, at least to some people; prom is not often a coming out event. And his parents throw him out because he gets on the interwebs, not because he’s gay on face value.


  2. There I was blithely reading the post and enjoying it, of course, and then I got to the bit about his being kicked out of his home. What a shock.

    Yeah, MadPriest. I’ll happily adopt him as well.

    What is WRONG with people?

  3. It is regrettable that Derrick was kicked out of his home. However, he is getting community support. PFLAG Macon has been in contact with him and this is an excerpt of a letter sent out to all in their network:

    “Know that there are plenty of local (within a short distance of his hometown) resources capable of helping Derrick and they are being made available. There are offers to help keep him safe (security) as well as other daily needs and for the prom. Derrick knows best what he will need and will accept accordingly.

    Finally, it is beyond awesome how the community has stepped up to the plate. The growth of this group and the positive attention the local GLBT community is paying to Derrick Martin is something never seen before in Central Georgia. Times are changing for the good, of course thanks to the supreme bravery of Derrick Martin.”

    While the Two Auntees do not know Derrick, we do know many of the people in PFLAG Macon. Derrick is in a supportive and safe community here.

  4. I’m one of those that messaged Derrick, assuring him that his parents will have to reconcile an authentic, peace-filled Derrick (supported by an extended community) with what they would wish to be true. They’ll figure it out. Meanwhile, simply by being who he is, he has made a large contribution to the “Derricks” that will follow.

  5. Derrick’s parents are a bit behind the times aren’t they? If they were proper parents they would surely be trying to use the media attention to land their own reality TV show.

    In the meantime, lucky Derrick’s boyfriend, to be stepping out with such an obviously thoughtful lad.

  6. Two Auntees’ comment warms my hear – and makes me cry…


    wv = ‘abless’
    A blessing upon you Derrick.

  7. What a cutie. I hope he and his boyfriend have a delightful time—his parents can go sit on a fork! >:-0 (Oh great, JCF: something more for my Lenten confession this Sunday! ;-/)

  8. something more for my Lenten confession this Sunday!

    Yes, especially if we read tomorrow that his parents have gone and sat on a fork and have hurt themselves. That will be all your fault, JCF.

  9. It would be all JCF’s fault. It would also be fabulous.

    (… Dear Lord, please, if you arrange nothing else for today or tomorrow that I ask you about, please, please let Derrick’s parents sit on a fork.)

  10. Our landlady would probably be delighted to adopt him, if he doesn’t mind living in Brooklyn with an Italian grandma in her 70s. I’m convinced that Michael is the gay son she’s always wanted but never had. She’d be happy to adopt the boyfriend too, just like she’s adopted me.

  11. As for the young lady in Mississippi, Constance McMillen, the judge ruled that the school violated her civil rights by barring her admission into the Prom, but was within its rights to cancel the Prom.

    Local parents have now organized a “private Prom” and have also barred her attendance.

    The Web site Tonic.Com, a digital media company, has contributed an education fund for her and she received US$30,000.00 from them on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.”

    It is great that folks are doing right by these kids, even if others do not.

  12. Local parents have now organized a “private Prom” and have also barred her attendance.


    How shit is that.

  13. The real shit thing is that they can do that without universal vilification. I’m not saying there aren’t people in England who would like to act in such a way but nobody outside of the BNP would ever dare. The media would make there lives a living hell – even the tory press.

  14. Hurray for the media then – occasionally we are some use.

    Those parents have no shame and no understanding. Did they even ask their kids what they thought or if they’d like their classmate to come along?

    I’ve seen a couple of recent stories about Constance and she was saying how hard it had been. How much more does she keep on having to go through??

    It’s just so crap.

  15. Mind you, the whole prom thing is gross. No way would I have got a date. At least with the school disco you could hide at the back and smoke.

  16. What I find hopeful is that this is in Cochran. Cochran (affectionately called “Cockroach” by those of us down this’a way) is a backwater. I mean it makes places like I live look like the big city. That school behind him? That’ll be for the entire county, and Georgia has big, rambling counties.

    He’s standing there, handsome (very), well-groomed, smiling and quite free of bruises, cuts, abrasions and other visible wounds. This would not have happened 20-25 years ago. There would have been no media attention – other than along the lines of “Troublemaking Deviant Embarrasses Human Race.” His parents – – I don’t understand that. It’s a pretty big deal in a rural Georgia community to kick your kid out, and the big deal is it reflects on the parents as sort of white-trash.

    Someone said they’d emailed him, or twittered or Ouijaed or whatever you non-hermits do. Mention to him that there is Trinity Church in Cochran. It’s tiny, and I think they only have a supply priest – Joy Fisher, I think, and she’s great and a lawyer for her other job – but it was a warm, gentle welcoming congregation and may be able to offer some guidance and support. If Fr. Ed (retired) is still there, he’s a great spirit along the lines of Thomas Merton (seriously, not just exaggerating), and the only person I’ve ever met with an actual harpsichord.

  17. When this whole thing blows over and his parents tell him “ok, you can come home now” I hope he flips them the biggest bird and gives them the world’s biggest “fuck you twice” but he doesn’t seem like the type.

    Pardon my French, but kicking him out of the home because of the *media attention* is 100% grade A FDA certified home-grown bullshit.

  18.      Years ago when my mom had undergone serious surgery, she confessed what bothered her the most was she didn’t have the strength or hand control to draw on her eyebrows (we are a very pale family.) The next day, I showed up with an eyebrow pencil matched to her coloring and offered to do them. She didn’t want me to bother, but gratefully relented when I said, “Mom, what is the point of having a gay son if he can’t do your make-up and keep you out of unflattering lighting situations when you get older?” We both laughed.

  19. Oh, this young man so deserves it! I can’t wrap my head around kicking one’s child out for any reason but especially for being gay. How can you say you love your child when you do that??? It boggles the mind of reasonable-thinking people.

    But I also have mixed feelings about the publicity which outed him. I wonder if he was ready to come out in such a big way that his parents found out. I guess if he told them, the result would have been the same. I guess I worry when people are outed before they’re ready to cope with the results.

    I would invite this boy to live at my house if he were in my town.

  20. I’m telling you, I’ve lived in communities like that. You don’t even kick your kid out for doping, stealing, whatever. These parents are going to be quietly pariah-ed.