WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- Christian Bales, a graduating high school student, was barred from delivering his valedictorian speech on Friday’s graduation.
- Holy Cross High School in Crestview Hills, Kentucky determined that Bales’ speech was “political and inconsistent with the teachings of the Catholic church.”
- But Bales could not be stopped, so he delivered the speech on a megaphone after the graduation ceremony, outside of the school.
Graduating as valedictorian, Christian Bales prepared a speech for the graduation ceremony. But he found out the day of graduation that the Diocese of Covington did not approve his speech because of its political theme. It was cut from the ceremony.
“The diocese took ours and said they were too confrontational, too angry, too personal, and that they weren’t appropriate for the setting,” Bales said.
Another speech, by student council president Katherine Frantz, was also cut.
In his speech outside of the school, Bales repeated the phrase “the young people will win.” It is a phrase created by Parkland, Florida students who survived a school shooting in February.
The diocese issued a statement regarding the incident.
“School officials and representatives of the Diocese of Covington reserve the right to review and approve all student speeches to be presented in public at high school graduations. The student speeches for the Holy Cross High School graduation were not submitted for review before the deadline. They were found to contain elements that were political and inconsistent with the teachings of the Catholic Church,” the statement said.
“I know they pointed out that the Parkland teens teach ideologies that apparently go against the Catholic faith, which I don’t agree with in my experience,” Bales told WKRC.
Last week, Bales’ mother, Gillian Marksberry, said she received a call from the school’s principal asking her help to ensure Bales wears men’s clothing to graduation. The principal also asked that Bales does not wear makeup or bobby pins in his hair.
Bales is gay and he’s open about it. He says the graduation incident won’t silence him.
“I think I’m going to keep fighting for what I believe in,” he said. “I’m going to keep using my megaphone and intensifying my voice.”
Source: CBS News