Web Rhetoric: Internet Users Respond to Constance McMillen

Youtube post #3: Constance McMillen is a Viking.

May 2nd, 2010 · No Comments
Youtube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_WrgP3mgsw

What interests me in this video actually pops up around 2:36 and 4:18.

“crutches13” responds to an internet comment by a student from Constance’s high school.

He says: “…but the problem I have is that they are saying that Constance is pushing them into doing things that they don’t want to do.”

He continues later: “It’s like, she just wanted to go to prom, dude. What’s the big deal in that? Her going to prom doesn’t affect how you go to prom. What the fuck?”

And finally: “You were like, ‘Fuck that shit. We’re staying away form that.’ I mean, that’s your own damn fault. She is bringing something into your town that you obviously haven’t faced before, but you know, go her for doing it. Respect your classmate for having the courage to stand up and say, ‘You know this is who I am and I’m not going to let you stop me from being me.'”

Basically, this argument focuses a lot on fault and responsibility. Clearly, there is at least one student from Constance’s high school that believes Constance and the ACLU were trying to control him/her so that Constance could get what she “wanted,” which isn’t specified. Blame is being placed upon Constance for the uproar that followed her decision to protest, and this student claims to have protested that by attending another private event to which Constance wasn’t invited.

crutches13 is arguing that–while Constance did draw in something new and challenging to the town–the media attention, the canceled proms, etc., are not her fault. Instead, he places blame on the school board and the students, who chose to react in the extreme ways that they did in response to someone who “just wanted to go to prom, dude.”

Discussions are common on who is at “fault” for the difficulties and backlash that have cropped up in this affair over the past couple of months. There are people who blame everything on Constance, saying she brought all of the negative treatment towards her on herself by not letting the prom issue go. Then, there are people who blame the school board, saying that none of this would have happened had the school board just decided to let Constance “be herself” and go to prom. Blame is also laid upon students, saying that the negative attention is a result of their choice to abandon and ridicule Constance instead of rally with her.

For another, more extreme example of someone blaming Constance for bringing the harsh treatment by her peers upon herself, you can check out this blog by “angrywhitedude.” It is pretty radical, but it does give some insight into a certain perspective: “Constance, honey, you’re just some mixed up kid from Mississippi who has pretty much screwed herself out of ever having a friend in Mississippi. You may have won the legal battle but you lost the prom war. You, and your friends in the ACLU, tried to push your way into the biggest event of your classmate’s high school years… You chose to push your selfish, mixed up desires onto your classmates.”

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