Hero Transgender Teen Fights Back After School Bans Him From Prom

anais celini and nathaniel baezHow is it 2014 and some schools have still not received the memo that they can’t make up arbitrary gender rules about proms? This was a settled legal matter years ago, and many schools have gotten really good at including LGBT kids in prom planning… and yet somehow some principals are still messing it up.

The details of the latest case are a little unique: instead of barring a gay couple, the school is barring a heterosexual trans guy from attending with his girlfriend. And instead of happening in some conservative backwater state, it happened in New York.

Anais Celini and Nathaniel Baez are the couple in question, and Martin Luther High School in Queens is the school. It’s a little unclear exactly what the school said to them. According to Celini, “the school said to me that his transition is unconventional and it’s not what he feels beneficial to letting him come to prom.” Obviously, this is not a completely coherent sentence, but this kid’s been thrust into a huge spotlight to deal with an issue that she really should not have to face, so it’s understandable that she’s rambling a bit.

Anais and Nathaniel aren’t giving up on a prom: they’re saving up for a prom of their own, and a transitional housing center has offered to help host it. And they’ve certainly brought a lot of attention to the school, which is always step one in getting evil administrators to reverse their dumb decisions.

A lot of the news coverage about these two is focusing on the prom, but they were also kicked out of their homes by their families last year, which is kind of a bigger deal as life events go. Maybe someday, parents casting their own kids into homelessness will warrant more news coverage than who gets to wear a tuxedo and rent a limo.

H/t: HuffPo

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  • Dakotahgeo

    ACLU… ACLU… ACLU… and a Court of Law, plus a hold on Prom for EVERYONE until the school stops resisting! It seems this is the only way to stop this foolishness!

  • contos

    @jayj150: What a cruel and ignorant comment. You obviously don’t know the first thing about transgenderism. Either that or you are a complete troll. Either way, such comments are a disgrace to the LGBT community.

  • IcarusD

    How is it that parents can legally kick underage kids out of their homes? Wouldn’t that count as parental abandonment? Or is it that the kids, even with the support of other legal resources, don’t challenge their parents legally for fear the courts would force them to return to their parents?

  • Thedrdonna

    @jayj150: except for binary trans folk who identify as LGB post-transition (which is most of them), and people with nonbinary identities: genderqueer, asexual, two spirit, bigender, androgyne, and a whole lot of others. The only people who legitimately believe the kind of offal you’re selling are folks whose primary source of information about trans people is Jerry Speinger. Join us in the 21st century, why don’t you?

  • jayj150

    @contos: Cruel?. Few things in the world are as cruel as forcing Gender Reassignment hormonal therapy on children simply because they display traits not typically associated with their gender, instead of simply and humanely explaining that being different and out of the norm is OK. Transgenderism/transsexualism is just another side on the same homophobic/mysoginistic coin as the Religious Right’s conversion therapy: they both want to force kids to conform to society’s stereotypical gender roles; the only difference is gender reassignment is by far the more dangerous and cruel of the two.

  • Thedrdonna

    @jayj150: Nobody under the age of 18 is given access to hormones. Minors are allowed to take puberty-blocking drugs, if they request it. You’ll notice that that is their prerogative, and that nobody is “forcing” them to do so? Also, at the age of 18 if the person in question still feels that they are transgender, they can initiate cross hormone therapy and undergo puberty as their identified gender. Otherwise, they can stop taking the blockers and undergo a normal puberty, albeit delayed. Up until that point, no permanent changes have been wrought. Far crueler than this would be forcing a transgender child to undergo puberty into a gender that they do not identify with, which is really what you’re advocating.

  • Miss Understood

    @jayj150: I agree that there should be more room in our culture for gender non-conforming people who do not feel the need to transition genders. Butch women and fem men should be able to feel comfortable the way they are. However,I think you are extremely presumptuous to assume you know what’s better for people who find that gender transition best fits their particular identity. We are not all the same, there should not be set rules on how we should present ourselves to the world.

  • litper

    trans hetero propaganda filth

  • Mezaien

    @litper: Don`t worry about a thing! when we come to power we will exterminate all of you “Litpershit” in concentration camps! leave it to me I am German, and know all about Gas s s s s.

  • DuMaurier

    @Miss Understood: Your post represents my own feelings, but I can’t deny jayj150 strikes a nerve with me. Mainly because the homophobia I experienced in school, when I think back on it, was mainly gender-based–“You act like a girl.” “You are a girl.” And back then, the progressive, sensitive view was, “Just because you’re interested in this activity instead of that one doesn’t make you a girl. You’re still a real boy, growing up to be a real man.” So I won’t deny that when I hear a trans person saying “I knew when I realized I liked Barbies instead of G.I. Joes” or something, at a gut level it disturbs me. I don’t endorse jayj150’s comments, because I know enough to know I don’t know everything, but that’s the feeling it brings back to me.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @Mezaien: You are the most disgusting pervert I’ve ever seen or read! It’s bad enough that you represent the disgusting, dirty side of Hitler, but to downgrade the wonderful German people who survived that era in the process is disgraceful! I have copy/pasted your comment and will be reporting it to the authorities! Shame! Shame on you!

  • Thedrdonna

    @DuMaurier: I think, though, that most trans people don’t follow that line of thought. Growing up, I personally didn’t like sports, or dolls, or getting dirty, or makeup. I liked building things, reading, playing video games…none of which are particularly gendered, although people may try to make you think video games are for boys only. My point is that the media representation of trans people is often very simplistic and follows an established set of stereotypes, and it’s not alltogether accurate.

  • GeriHew

    @jayj150: Who says Nathaniel Baez identifies as heterosexual man anyway?

    The people who write for Queerty seem to be incapable of reporting on anything like this without sticking a specific sexuality label on someone.

  • litper

    @Mezaien: ha, you’re losing your power with everyday, you effete freaks

  • GeriHew

    This obviously isn’t just a transgender issue. The school isn’t just being transphobic they are also clearly being homophobic. Because they are barring Anais Celini and Nathaniel Baez from attending the prom together because they perceive them to be a same-sex couple.

    On a whole other level, I have to say as a person from the UK, I find the whole school prom thing you have going on in the USA bizarre and disturbing anyway. The sexualization of the whole thing, and this having to have a date to take to the prom I mean. What damned business is it of the Martin Luther High School principle and administrators whether Anais and Nathaniel are lovers or just good friends? She’s a pupil and he’s a recent ex-pupil and they want to go together. That’s all these beaks need to know and that’s all the should care about.

    We just had an end of term disco at my school. All senior pupils could go – with their date, or a mate/mates (NB mate = a friend) or just turn up on their own.

  • inbama

    This is when I feel like I’m in a cult, and I’m being told “Drink the Kool Aid.”
    Nathaniel identifies as male and should be treated as such – I agree.
    Still, his sex, which was correctly determined by which set of hormones, reproductive organs and secondary sex characteristics, remains unchanged.
    (Sorry, but I just can’t say sex is “assigned” which sounds absurdly random considering doctors, nurses and midwives are correct 99.7% of the time.)
    Therefore, to say they are not a same-sex couple is disingenuous.
    It’s swapping gender for sex.
    They’re not being called a “same-gender couple.”

  • sejjo

    I thought New Yorkers were used to everything. I guess if Prop 8 can happen in California, this can happen in New York. I mean, why not? Let the bigotry happen somewhere else instead of the South.

Comments are closed.