A Kidderminster drama teacher recently experienced homophobia firsthand, and chose to deal with it in a very dignified (yet slightly feisty) way.
According to Metro, Michael Neri has been a drama teacher for nine years — so he certainly knows what he’s doing. But when one mother learned Neri was gay, she decided to pull her children from his class, claiming that she did not want them being influenced by his “unconventional ideas”. Unbelievably, she also went as far as to ask for her deposit back.
The unnamed Christian woman sent Neri a text, in which she explained that her reason for taking her kids out of his class was because of her beliefs.
While her text no doubt left Neri feeling hurt, frustrated and angry, he didn’t fire back an angry message. Instead, he chose to write a brilliant response which was both well thought out and a little sassy, and included sentences like “I find theatre without gays is like cooking without spices,” and “I hear StageCoach are (sic) enrolling but there (sic) teachers have been known to wear mixed fabrics, which I am sure you are aware is forbidden in the bible (sic).”
Got a lovely text this week pic.twitter.com/UWPGRycuph
— Michael Neri (@michaelneri) November 16, 2015
For the most part, the reaction to the post has been overwhelmingly positive.
@michaelneri as a practicing Catholic, I am genuinely embarrassed by the person that sent this. Your response is absolutely perfect.
— Mike Peters (@djmikepeters) November 17, 2015
@michaelneri i applaud you for this response! 👏🏼 i can feel your genuine love & support for the children you teach. Keep it up! ✌🏼️💕
— Joel A. (@joelesvegan) November 23, 2015
@michaelneri you are a legend, bravo for the brilliant response to such a closed minded bigot!! You won the internet this week sir!
— Darth Naga (@DarthNaga) November 23, 2015
We completely agree: Neri has won the Internet. But while he deserves a slow clap for his response, his decision to share his post online does much more than just entertain, it raises awareness for the fact that homophobia still exists — even though it’s 2015.
Oh, and the musical that the children were involved in was Rent by Jonathan Larson, and if you’re not familiar with the story, it deals with love, loss, AIDS and wait for it… homosexuals.