Singer Lady Gaga is supporting an openly gay Tennessee teenager who was sent home from school Monday for wearing a T-shirt that read "I Heart Lady Gay Gay." Cole Goforth, 15, wore the shirt to pay homage to Lady Gaga and her large number of homosexual fans.
Like so many celebrities these days, Lady Gaga shared her thoughts Twitter:
"Thank u for wearing your tee-shirt proud at school, you make me so proud, at the monsterball, you are an inspiration to us all. I love you."
She later added:
"I love you Cole, you just be yourself. You're perfect the way God made you."
Cole is openly gay. School administrators told him to go home and change his shirt, saying it was causing a disruption.
Cole's mother doubts this. She says he was worn shirts with the word "gay" on them before with no problems. She thinks it's because of Cole's look and his sexual orientation, pointing out other kids who wear shirts with religious slogans or the Confederate flag are not sent home.
"I think they are singling him out, I really do, and they've made statements that if he wore this in California, he'd fit in just fine," said Julie Gordon.
"I just think my sexuality isn't widely accepted around here," Goforth responded. "So of course they are going to single me out."
But school officials say that is not the case. They say there was a fight at the school last week, and thought the shirt might spark a new round of violence.
"We've had a few disruptions the last few days, and we thought the slogan on that shirt would continue to escalate those incidents that had occurred," said Danny Weeks, assistant director of the school board.