Blogs & Columns
11 min

Narcel Neegaard: The 11-year-old gay rights activist

In a blog post on Huffington Post (so eloquently written it puts us adult gay bloggers to shame!), Marcel Neegaard shares how he has been home schooled during the sixth grade to avoid the bullying that he claims became so severe that if he’d remained enrolled at his school he might’ve tried to take his own life.

In a video filmed with his parents, Neegaard talks about his experiences, including when he first realized he was gay, dealing with bullying, and the new Classroom Protection Act, implemented by Oak Ridge, Tennessee, representative John Ragan. 

Neegaard has created a petition to take a stand against Ragan’s Classroom Protection Act and in his blog post, explains why it should be fought:

John Ragan’s Classroom Protection Act will do harm to LGBT students across the state. It promotes a system that does not educate students about gays, because no one but counselors, nurses and principals can talk about being gay. This also means that if a student were to talk to a teacher about being bullied because he or she is gay or possibly gay, the teacher would be required to say something like, “That subject is inappropriate for your age group.” If the student managed to find an “appropriate” person, that counselor, nurse or principal would have to tell the student’s parents that their child may be gay. What happens if the family is homophobic? Even if the family is supportive, every student deserves the right to come out to family members when he or she wants.

Check out Neegaard’s video for more insight into how the Classroom Protection Act oppresses all Tennessee students, gay or straight: