prom king

Even Derrick Martin’s Gay Friends Bailed On Him

Would it be so wrong to wrap our arms around the shoulders of Georgia high school senior Derrick Martin, pull him close to our breast, stroke his hair, and tell him everything is going to be all right? After winning approval to bring his boyfriend to the prom, he was promptly kicked out of his own house and protested by classmates. Oh, and even his gay friends pretty much abandoned him.

He also has friends who are gay, Derrick said. He expected some of them to stand with him when he took his request to school officials. “I thought I would have had a little bit of backup,” he said, disappointment creeping in his voice. “But it’s just me.” His boyfriend, who’s also 18 and a school senior, has not made any public comments. Derrick’s parents are remaining silent, too.

For now, he’s staying at a female friend’s house. (They went together to prom last year.) But come April 17, Derrick’s prom night will arrive. And we hope his parents are there to snap pictures as he awkwardly pins a boutonniere on his boyfriend’s tux.

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  • terrwill

    Most likely all were threatend with eviction notices in their own homes same as Derrick………Rightwing lunatic scumbags who preach “family values” are simply reprehensive beings……..

  • ionos

    Given how cute and strong he is, totally okay to pull him close and give him a hug! And also lend a helping had, in case he needs it.

  • seriously

    Typical. I think this is a good example of events that can lead to infidelity and the same ones will claim they are straight. Being gay in Georgia affects nearly every aspect of life, and not in a good way.

  • david alex nahmod

    Of course his gay friends abandoned him. That’s what the gay community does. It’s who we are.

    When I was subjected to anti gay hate, gay friends abandoned me and gay activists went out of their way to hurt and discredit me.
    Many of them told me that being gay justified these actions.

    We are the worst excuse for a community I’ve ever seen. Our behavior and our treatment of one another is so deplorable, I’m not sure we’re worthy of equality.

  • Taylor Siluwé

    This is beyond sad. And a terrible message to other LGBT youth thinking of taking a ‘I refuse to be 2nd class’ stance.

    Derrick Martin and Constance Millen are heroes for gay youth. But sometimes heroes, like artists, aren’t fully appreciated in the beginning.

    Still, those of us who are older and wiser know exactly what they are. I wish I was in a position to give them both full scholarships. *sigh* Partly because if someone in my high school days had taken this stance expecting my support, I would have sorely disappointed and crumpled like a Kleenex, too. Takes balls to be a gay teen activist, and back then I had no such stones.

  • D'oh, The Magnificent

    I wish I could say that I am surprised. But given what this country is and what the gay community is- I am not surprised. I hope his life goes better as time goes on. I

  • Taylor Siluwé

    No. 4 · david alex nahmod

    Disparaging the entire gay community for the actions of some fearful high schools kids is not helpful, and extremely insulting to those of us who DO CARE but feel powerless to do very much about it.

    If I may ask: What exactly are you doing to help this kid? Are you setting up a scholarship for him now that he’s homeless and his parents are probably not gonna kick in for college?

    Maybe someone in the community screwed you over, but back off the rest of us who haven’t.

  • romeo

    It isn’t “the gay community” that is abandoning him. It’s closeted or semi-closeted teen aged gays in Bumfuck Georgia who, unlike Derrick, haven’t learned how to stand up for themselves yet. This is part of life for Derrick and the rest of us as well. The times when you learn who your real friends are. But Derrick needs to keep in mind that not everyone is cut out for courage as he is. He should judge those friends on an individual basis, but he has every right to judge them.

  • elvischomsky

    It’s clear his school and town are homophobic environments – it’s terrible he seems alone on this, but can you really blame other school kids for not coming out?

  • david alex nahmod

    Sorry, folks, but I was treated exactly the same way Derrick was by nationally known gay rights groups.
    I know a gay man with AIDS who was taunted for his “gross” appearence by another gay man.
    Truth Wins Out, HRC, MCC all turned their backs on the gentleman with AIDS, actually saying they didn’t care.

    So how can I reach Derrick? I’d be happy to send him some grocery money.

  • Austin

    Is it really legal to kick kids out of the house?
    The parents are responsible for him till he’s of legal age,
    regargless of whether he’s gay or straight.

  • Lanjier

    Derrick: Go to the prom, then finish school somewhere else. Time to go.

  • MikeSLC

    @david alex nahmod:

    Well the HRC does not represent the entire gay community. I think it’s wrong to say the gay community doesn’t care about a certain segment. I’m not homeless or have aids but I do care about this problem in our community. His gay friends were in the wrong to not back him up.

  • Forrest

    Rural Georgia and openly Gay don’t mix well. I applaud Derricks courage but other gay students might be in worse danger if they came out. I don’t blame them at all.its about survival at that age.

  • D'oh, The Magnificent

    @Forrest: At the same age, black teenagers and younger were asked to risk their lives in the struggle for black civil rights. Some ended up giving their lives. I have mentioned this story before. My high school principled talked about how when her girls basket ball team (all black) would got to white high schools to be spit on and attacked and threatened, and yet, they felt they had to do it or things would remain the same. My point is pretty simple- if we keep making excuses things will stay the same. The kids that come after them will have it no better.

  • david alex nahmod

    MileSLC, you are right up to a point.
    But HRC, and Truth Wins Out are often allowed to speak “for” us to the mainstream media.
    Those groups are run by bullies who lie and browbeat good people like us into silence.
    What they do when they think no one is looking leads to how Derrick, the man with AIDS and myself were treated.
    It’s up to good people like us to stand up and demand a real community and real advocacy groups who will help us when we need them.

  • Mike

    @david alex nahmod:

    I agree there is a division between the grassroots of the gay community and Gay, Inc. I am not attacking the HRC as a whole organization, there are a lot of good people who work for and with the organization that does many good things for the gay community, but I believe some of their past actions bring into question their credibility as to whether they truly fight for the common gay.

    As to the comment that no one in the gay community is paying attention to the HRC I disagree, they have many critics among others are Americablog gay, Queerty, many if not the majority in San Francisco, the Republicans in the gay community which constitute about 30% of us, Actup, etc etc, the list is long.

  • Ben

    Let me take a wild guess – you’re a gay Republican like Tom Beddingfield or Tom Tancredo’s gay staffer Tyler Whitney. You want the gay community to support you as you demonize and stereotype other gay people as “scum” and “seeking special rights”.

  • Ben

    I was replying to “david alex nimmod’s” hateful comments.

  • Larry

    Living in certain states and communities where gayness is not accepted is rough and it’s not easy there will always be challenges, Some of us get treated like outsiders and its not fair we are all the same no matter who we are , people should not judge us by our covers and what we do in the privacy of our bedrooms is what we do. People should live there own lives the way they choose too without critizing other people in regards to how they live in society, we all need to be our own unique person who ever we are and no matter who we are.

  • MikeSLC

    Nope, I’m as liberal as they come my friend. I’m just concerned that our chief negotiator is not really negotiating on our behalf.

    Some of HRC’s past actions that angered many in the gay community include:

    * Not opposing or supporting a version of the ENDA bill that did not include transgender people, despite the fact that most other gay groups were opposing the bill. This resulted in a massive protest in SF when Joe went to a fundraiser there (do you really think they would have the same position if the bill covered all LBT but not G?)
    * Providing political coverage to the DOJ when they compared gay relationships to pedophilia, incest, and bestiality.
    * Joe going to the sundance festival instead of going to a congressional hearing about the involvement of several Senators in their support of a law in Uganda that would put gay people to death.
    * Lack of transparency, I have no damn idea where my money went, did it go to fight for gay rights or to pay for Joe to ride around on a jet and stay @ the ritz.
    * Lack of diversity, lack of bringing awareneness to the homeless LGBT, those with aids, and colored LGBT.

  • B

    No. 11 · Austin asked, “Is it really legal to kick kids out of the house? The parents are responsible for him till he’s of legal age, regargless of whether he’s gay or straight.”

    The high-school student in question is 18 years old. Georgia seems to define a child for this purpose as one who is under 18, so his parents seem to be off the hook legally.

    Child – Under Georgia law, a child is defined as any individual who is:
    – under the age of 17 years and the subject of a delinquency action;
    – under the age of 18 years, if the subject of a deprivation action;
    – under the age of 18 years, if alleged to be a status offender.

  • david alex nahmod

    I am not a Republican, Ben.
    Just a gay man telling the truth about how gay people treat each other.

  • david alex nahmod

    A question for Ben:
    Why don’t you say you’re sorry that Derrick’s gay friends deserted him, or that a gay man with AIDS made fun of by another gay man?
    We will not achieve real equality until we stop making allowances for that kind of behavior.

  • elvischomsky

    @D’oh, The Magnificent: You might like to stop for a minute and think how mean spirited and closed minded you sound here – ironically.
    Just a thought…

  • david alex nahmod

    There’s nothing mean spirited about telling the truth. We have a long history of turning our backs on each other.
    Our advocacy groups have been ignoring us for years.
    It’s time to speak up about it, and I’m far from the only one doing so.

    Now, if I can figure out how to reach Derrick, I will indeed send him some grocery money.

  • elvischomsky

    @david alex nahmod: If only everybody in the world was as wonderful as you think you are…

  • Taylor Siluwé

    No. 25 · david alex nahmod

    “There’s nothing mean spirited about telling the truth.”

    You’ve been an insensitive, vile, disrespectful douchebag on this matter, especially considering the kid’s family and friends could read all this. Hey, like you said, it’s just the truth.

    None of us know enough about him to make sweeping assertions about his life. One could also make assertions about a guy with your last name – or mine for that matter.

    Have a little human decency and go away.

  • hephaestion

    I hope Derrick will move to Atlanta or another large city with a large gay populace once he’s out of high school. Atlanta has a wonderful gay community in Midtown.

  • carman

    i dont know derrick or anyone who has posted here but im horrified and disgusted by the way derrick was treated by his family and by his gay friends. im equally disgusted by the name calling by certain posters. dooshbag? viale? how about a reality check? derrick martins gay friends bailed on him as per the heading of this story that so many gay people bail on each other is worthy of discussion. the name calling here would barely pass muster in a 5th grade classroom and is typical of the rhetoric that has caused us to lose so many of our recent battles.

  • Cam

    No. 4 · david alex nahmod said…
    Of course his gay friends abandoned him. That’s what the gay community does. It’s who we are.

    When I was subjected to anti gay hate, gay friends abandoned me and gay activists went out of their way to hurt and discredit me.
    Many of them told me that being gay justified these actions.

    We are the worst excuse for a community I’ve ever seen. Our behavior and our treatment of one another is so deplorable, I’m not sure we’re worthy of equality.

    This seems like a troll posting or something. I can see cowardly friends backing down (Remeber, are any of you in here attacking his friends, over on the other posts PRAISING that coward Ricky Martin for waiting until now to come out? If you are then you need to rething).

    But also, I’m not sure what the hell kind of “Gay Acticvists” would have gone out of their way to not only hurt and discredit you, but would tell you that “Being Gay justified those actions.” Typical troll posting. give us the name of these supposed activists who say that being gay is bad and you deserve to be attacked because of it. I don’t buy it.

  • Cam

    As for Derrik, I hope that HRC actually uses some of the Millions they squeeze out of the gay community for a whorthwhile cause and give this kid a grant or scholarship. But then again, they’d rather support cowards and straight “Allies” in the hopes that they can get them to show up at a Black tie gala.


    @ionos: Your shit sounds anally creepy! You should be [email protected]Forrest: Indeed, I got that “Rural Georgia and Gay don’t mix” message in Clint Eastwood’s “Garden of Good and Evil” with John Cusack and Kevin Spacey.

  • Steve

    In answer to some questions above, if you wish to provide support to Derrick Martin, you can find information on the facebook page “We support Derrick Martin taking his boyfriend to the prom.”, accessible here:

    On the info page of that web site, it provides the following link for providing financial support, via paypal:

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