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High school yearbook article sparks furor in Lenoir City

May 3rd, 2012 9:40 am by Hugh G. Willett

High school yearbook article sparks furor in Lenoir City

LENOIR CITY — An article in the Lenoir City High School yearbook describing the life of a gay student has ignited a storm of controversy that has spilled over onto local blogs and is threatening to disrupt upcoming graduation ceremonies.

The article — "It's OK to be Gay" — was written by the yearbook's student staff to profile the experiences of gay student Zac Mitchell.

The interview includes Mitchell's description of how he and his family have dealt with the issues of coming out in public and being bullied by others. He also describes extracurricular activities, including cross-dressing and being "hit on by straight guys."

The yearbooks were distributed Friday. By Monday, local blogs had taken up the fight both for and against the article and the yearbook's faculty adviser, James Yoakley.

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