Overwhelming support for one brave little girl

Brighid Monahan, Staff Writer

Over 100 Mount Horeb parents and children came to support a brave 1st grade girl from Mount Horeb Primary Center on Dec. 2, at the Mount Horeb Public Library’s reading of “I Am Jazz” by Jessica Langdon and Jazz Jennings.

After this 6-year-old transgender child began coming to school as a girl, her principle decided to read the book “I Am Jazz” to the school to help the other students understand what the first grader was going through.

Co-Author Jessica Langdon has said, “When I created this book with Jazz and her mother, we were working on a developmentally appropriate way to discuss differences with elementary age people. Weather it be about marriage equality, interracial couples, or people who are disabled.“

But these good intentions were stopped in their tracks when a group of angry parents threatened to sue the school if it went through with the reading. Rather than be deterred from supporting this little girl, the townspeople of Mount Horeb’s support grew exponentially.

After a rally led by the Gender and Sexuality Alliance in front of the Mount Horeb High School, Claire Jenkins, a senior and Alliance member, gave a short speech and read the book “I Am Jazz” to the large crowd of people gathered in support.

Human Rights Campaign member Johanna Eager flew in from Seattle to show support and offer her help in making schools safer for diverse families.

“We want to include kids from all backgrounds, abilities, sexualities and cultures. And starting at the elementary school age is the best way to start kids on the path of acceptance.”

After the reading, children and their parents could pick up a copy of “I Am Jazz” and get it signed by Langdon. “This is a momentous moment,” says one local parent, “This is the ultimate anti-bullying campaign and we are in the center of it.”

To anyone who has ever been bullied for being different or known someone who has, this was a momentous occasion. Because of one brave little girl not afraid to be herself, a whole town is changing the way differences are treated in schools forever.