In a first for the county, this year’s prom was the area’s first “Integrated Prom”, meaning that all races were welcome to attend. Yes, that’s right, the prom in Wilcox County was, until this year, segregated by race. Each year, black students and white students held separate proms, and because each prom was held off school grounds and received no funding from the school, they were allowed to be racially segregated.
Several students including Keela Bloodworth took it upon themselves to end an embarrassing tradition. Bloodworth said she was embarrassed to be from a county which still allowed such activities. She quickly organized fundraisers to help fund the interracial prom event. The students used Twitter and Facebook to spread their message and within days they had more than enough money to run their prom.
The students organizing the event say that the community, for the most part, has been supportive of their “new” prom. There has been some minor backlash as some flyers were torn down around the town but by and large there was just overwhelming support. In a strange twist however, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal refused to comment on the event saying he does not want to appear to be “taking sides.”
It would seem to me that if you are going to take sides on anything, it should be to lend your support to end an archaic blatant form of racism… not exactly the inspired leadership one hopes of from their elected officials.