News & Politics

Georgia Governor Derides Effort to End Whites-Only Prom

The governor's spokesman called the effort to promote an integrated prom in Wilcox County a 'silly publicity stunt.'

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal.
Photo Credit: Rich Lacey/Flickr

A group of teens backed by a liberal group in Georgia want to end the segregated prom that exists in Wilcox County. But the governor thinks that effort is “ a silly publicity stunt,” as Think Progress notes.

In response to inquiries from Georgia news outlet 13 WMAZ about whether he supports efforts to end the segregated, whites-only prom that parents have organized in Wilcox County, the governor’s spokesman said: “This is a leftist front group for the state Democratic party and we're not going to lend a hand to their silly publicity stunt.” The “front group” referred to is Better Georgia, a progressive group in the state. They were pushing for officials in the state “to publicly support the students of Wilcox County who are fighting to end a 'separate-but-equal' high school prom.”

The practice of segregated proms in the Georgia county has garnered attention and controversy in recent days. A group of white and black friends who attend Wilcox County High School have organized against the segregated proms. The school is reportedly not violating civil rights laws since the high school does not organize the prom itself; instead, parents do.

While the governor isn’t speaking out, other lawmakers are. Four Democrats and three Republicans from the state have supported Better Deal’s efforts.

School officials say they will discuss the option of holding an official, integrated prom next year.

Alex Kane is former World editor at AlterNet. His work has appeared in Mondoweiss, Salon, VICE, the Los Angeles Review of Books and more. Follow him on Twitter @alexbkane.