SULLIVAN, Ind. - Some parents, students and clergy in an eastern Indiana city want a separate high school prom banning gay and lesbian students.
A group of supporters met Sunday at the Sullivan First Christian Church, in Sullivan County, to plan a separate "traditional prom" for Sullivan High School students that would prohibit gays from attending, WTWO reported .
"We want to make the public see that we love the homosexuals, but we don't think it's right nor should it be accepted," a student told WTWO.
"If we can get a good prom, then we can convince more people to come and follow what they believe," student Kynon Johnson told WTWO.
Among the supporters is Diana Medley, a special education teacher at nearby North Central Jr./Sr. High School in the Northeast School Corporation, who told WTWO she doesn't believe anyone is born gay.
"We don't agree with [homosexuality], and it's offensive to us," she said. "Homosexual students come to me with their problems, and I don't agree with them, but I care about them. It's the same thing with my special needs kids. I think God puts everyone in our lives for a reason."
When asked if she thinks gays have a purpose in life, Medley said, "No I honestly don't. Sorry, but I don't. I don't understand it."
"A gay person isn't going to come up and make some change unless it's to realize that it was a choice and they're choosing God," Medley told WTWO.
Area pastors are also voicing support for the separate prom movement.
"Christians have always been prepared for a fight. Jesus gave us armor for the front, not the back. We're not running anymore," Bill Phegley, with Carlisle Church, told WTWO.
A Facebook page supporting the "traditional prom" had been pulled down Monday morning, and a counter campaign had been launched called Support the Sullivan High School Prom for All Students .
National gay rights advocate Dan Savage also blasted the separate prom movement on his blog .
"There's no way to stop the haters at Sullivan High School from holding an independent prom for the special bigoted kids," he wrote. "But here's what we can do: we can make a noise so loud enough that all the queer kids at Sullivan High School hear it. Those kids need to know that there are people -- a lot of people -- who think this (expletive) is wrong."
Messages seeking comment were left Monday for Southwest School Corporation Superintendent Chris Stitzle and for Northeast School Corporation Superintendent Mark Baker.