Target: Ms. Anais Celini
Goal: Congratulate brave teen for organizing her own prom when school banned her trans date
Anais Celini of Queens, New York is just like any other teenager. She was excited to attend her prom at Martin Luther High School, excited to buy a dress, take pictures, and dance the night away with her boyfriend, Nathaniel Baez. Unfortunately, her school decided that Nathaniel was not a suitable date and barred them from attending. Anais Celini’s boyfriend Nathaniel is transgender and according to the school his “transition was unconventional” and “not beneficial.” It is beyond reprehensible that a high school would make a judgment on the burgeoning sexuality of one of its students, and even more deplorable that it would deny that student privileges out of sheer ignorance. However, Anais is a brave, ingenious young woman who has chosen not to let her school’s decision ruin this high school rite of passage. Rather than let her transphobic school have the last word, she and Baez have decided to organize their own prom. A local transitional housing center has offered its space as a venue. These teens have shown great courage and self-reliance, and deserve our applause.
Although Martin Luther High School has refused to comment on the matter, Nathaniel Baez told The Huffington Post “it’s hard because I really wanted her to be able to go to prom with her friends, and me as well, because it is one of the stepping stones in high school.” While prom may seem trivial to adults, to a seventeen year old, it is a momentous occasion. No student should be denied this fun experience just because they are LGBTQ. Ms. Celini expressed as much frustration when she told Buzzfeed.com, “We are no longer a same-sex couple. They need to see him as male and respect that. We didn’t want to sneak ourselves into prom, we wanted to be upfront and be respectful about it.”
This young couple is not only eloquent in describing their struggle; they are working creatively to overcome it. They deserve recognition and congratulations. Let them know that their courage has not gone unnoticed.
Dear Ms. Anais Celini,
Your courage in the face of your high school’s ignorance is inspiring. Your ingenuity in solving the problem of your school banning your transgender date by hosting your own prom where all are welcome serves as a good example to all teens.
I am writing to you today to commend your courageous actions and to wish you a fun and safe prom night. Keep up the good fight.
[Your Name Here]