NYC School Bans 5th-Grader Kameron Slade’s Marriage Equality Speech
A fifth-grader at a New York City public school was barred by officials from delivering a speech in favor of marriage equality.
According to NY1, Kameron Slade, who was told to pick any topic he liked, planned to give the speech for a school competition at PS-195 in Queens. But the boy’s mother said the school principal informed her that the topic was inappropriate for such young students and that he should prepare a different speech or be booted from the contest.
“She said that people have different opinions on [same-sex marriage] and that some parents may not want their children to learn about this type of topic,” Kameron’s mother, who did not want to be identified, told NY1.
“It’s on the news. It’s part of our lives now. They need to open up. The New York City Department of Education needs to open up.”
“I was really looking forward to it,” Kameron said of his speech. “I thought that this was a real good winning speech for tomorrow.”
“For him to be denied the right to voice his opinion really upsets me,” his mother fumed.
Kameron’s speech was centered around the theme of tolerance and acceptance. It referenced the personal example of his mother’s gay friends.
“They seemed happy,” he told NY1. “Best of all, they seemed to love each other. The only difference was that there were two moms instead of a mother and a father.”
The New York City Department of Education told NY1 that Kameron will be allowed to deliver his speech on Monday, but in a different assembly.
In the meantime, Kameron’s competition speech is being re-written. The topic? Animal cruelty prevention.