Students at a Boston-area middle school were accused of homophobia and intolerance by education officials after they tore down rainbow decorations and chanted that “U.S.A.” was their pronoun during ‘displays of intolerance and homophobia.”
Students at Marshall Simonds Middle School in Burlington were invited to wear rainbow-colored clothing on June 2 in celebration of Pride Month, Fox affiliate, Boston 25 News reported.
“On that same day there was a counter-demonstration in response to what should have been a day to celebrate. Students wore red, white and blue clothing, chanted ‘my pronouns are USA’ and destroyed rainbow decorations at the school,” Nancy Bonassera, co-chair of the Burlington Equity Coalition, said during Monday’s select board meeting.
“These displays of intolerance and homophobia are unacceptable and impact the whole community,” she added.
The controversy began when the school’s LGBTQ+ student organization invited students to wear the Pride colors and handed out rainbow stickers, the Boston Globe reported.
A letter from school administrators to parents said some students were chanting “U.S.A. are my pronouns” and had intimidated students supporting the event.
“I want to publicly state that I stand in solidarity and support of the members of the LGBTQ community who were impacted by these events,” school Principal Cari Perchase wrote in the joint letter with Superintendent Eric Conti. “I am truly sorry that a day meant for you to celebrate your identity turned into a day of intolerance.”
Select Board member Michael Espejo said a “bad light has been cast over our town,” CBS Boston reported.
“I was very upset, I’ve lost sleep over it,” Espejo said about the incident. “It kind of shocked me to my core. I didn’t think something like that could happen in Burlington.”
Gov. Maura Healey, one of the nation’s first two lesbian governors, said she was disappointed by what happened at the school, Boston, 25 News reported.
“I hope it becomes a teaching moment for the young people who were involved in that,” Healey said. “It doesn’t represent who we are as a state.”
Fox News Digital has reached out to the Burlington school district for more information, but has not yet heard back.