A Catholic high school in New York is being bashed by a student’s mother after it banned her son from graduation…for shouting “Fuck Jesus” at a Catholic Mass.
The saga, according to the New York news site DNAinfo, started May 12 at Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx when Latrell Davis was passing by an auditorium where the school was holding a Catholic Mass. As he was passing by the room, Davis loudly exclaimed “Fuck Jesus.”
When he was identified for his role, Davis was hit with an array of punishments, including being suspended and barred from senior prom. Now, the school says he also won’t be allowed to attend his graduation ceremony Saturday at St. Patrick’s Cathedral (though he is still graduating).
That, his mother says, goes too far.
[At first I thought] well, that was dumb on your end, so this is the punishment that you get,” Ebony Martin told DNAinfo. But she says the graduation ban punishes not just Davis but also her.
“I was a teen mom. I didn’t go to my own graduation, so I want to be proud to see my son graduate because he’s labeled as a statistic,” she said. “Coming from an African-American teen mother, the odds were really against him.”
Davis admits what he did was “stupid,” but has also tried to claim that his “fuck Jesus” outburst should be mitigated because he was simply playing follow the leader.
“When I passed the auditorium door, I heard someone say, ‘F Jesus,'” he said, “and then I turned around, and the door was still open, and I repeated it, like questioning it. So I was like, ‘F Jesus?'”
The school, however, paints a slightly different picture, claiming students saw Davis actually enter the auditorium and loudly shout his sacrilege, and maintaining that his punishment is “final.”
The stern punishment Davis received shouldn’t necessarily be a surprise. The discipline page of the school’s website touts its tough discipline and makes it clear that bad behavior will not be tolerated. Anything from chewing gum to sporting chin hair can be result in detention, and expulsion is the only listed punishment for students who get in trouble with the police.
“Every educational institution must maintain discipline if true learning is to occur,” the policy says. “This is one area for which Cardinal Hayes High School is known and for which it is especially respected.”
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