A high school in Danbury, CT, made local history this weekend as it crowned the first gay male prom queen in the school’s history.
Students from Danbury High School gave a standing ovation as Nasir Fleming took the stage at the Matrix Center on Friday night to accept the crown. “I was shocked to see how awesome and supportive my peers are,” Fleming told Queerty. “I received a decent amount of negative backlash, so I was surprised when I won.”
Fleming, who says he’s “very well liked” at school but “not immune to criticism nor judgement,” says he hopes his reign as prom queen will spread a message of acceptance. “The problem is that we’re taught to tolerate, but we need to accept everyone,” he says.
Fleming tells Queerty he’s out at school and was voted prom queen by an election held by his peers. He owes his glowing self-acceptance in part to his “uber-supportive” family. “I live with my uncle and he was more excited about me being crowned than I was,” he tells us. “I’m very thankful to have him as a form of support, I don’t know if I would have had the opportunity to be who I am and be elected as prom queen if it wasn’t for him raising me.”
Although Fleming does not identify as transgender, he hopes his victory will serve to inspire the countless trans students facing discrimination during prom court season:
My main reason for wanting to win prom queen is to show the school, and hopefully the world, that if a spunky, odd gay kid can win prom queen, then anyone can! This message is mainly for transgendered people, because they seem to face so much backlash for simply being themselves. If I can win a title that is out of my gender, anyone else should be able to, including transgendered people.
I also want other LGBT youth that our main purpose in life is to make ourselves happy. Very often we conform to societal norms in order to be accepted, and it is not acceptable for us to shun a perfectly fine part of ourselves. We are the innovators of the future, we are the future and we can make a change.
Congratulations, Nasir! Diamond is your color, girl.
Check out video from the crowning below: