Communities in Mississippi are standing up after a new school policy was passed after a student tried to form a gay-straight alliance (GSA).

Last week, according to The Clarion-Ledger, Rankin County Superintendent Lynn Weathersby expressed concern about a group that wanted to form a “gay club” and sought counsel on how to “limit organizations like that on campus that [it does not] want to endorse and don’t want.”  Ultimately, the Rankin County School Board in Mississippi created a new policy, which would require student to obtain parental permission prior to joining any club. 

Yesterday, community members came out to protest the decision, which could ultimately prevent GSAs and pro-LGBT student groups from forming on campus.

Sophomore Hunter Shannon, who tried to start the club, isn’t going down without a fight. "We're here today to try and make a statement to the RCSD office that we all want our rights,” Shannon told the Clarion-Ledger. “And it's not just us students; there are parents that want it too."

Others showed up to support the LGBT community as a whole. Protestor LJ Bailey told WAPT News, "I love my mother with all my heart and I have never seen her so happy than when she came out, and I'll support anything that supports her."

A political cartoon in The Clarion-Ledger last week also responded to the school incident, stating, “Rankin County has a new alphabet.”

The cartoon by Marshall Ramsey shows a chalkboard with the alphabet, except the “G,” “A” and “Y” are missing.

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