Source: Angus McCormack Facebook
Meet Angus McCormack, a gay man kicked out of school event after his outfit, the one he’s wearing in the photo above, was deemed as “inappropriate“.
Angus arrived at his old school, the Sacred Heart Cathedral, in Bendigo, Victoria, on May 6 to attend the annual Foundation Day Service run by his old school, Girton Grammar. Little did he know he would be asked to leave the premises before even making an entrance.
As soon as he made it to the event, Angus was asked to leave by deputy head Robyn MacCulloch, who claimed that the former student was “dressed inappropriate”. Again, McCormack was wearing the exact ensemble shown in the header photo.
Not wanting to make a scene, Angus left immediately.
Hurt by what had happened, he took to Facebook to write a lengthy post and express his “great sadness“.
“Dear friends, family and colleagues. It is with great sadness that I write to tell you about such an outrageous and disgraceful event in which I was involved on Friday 6 May,” he began. “On that day, I returned to my hometown of Bendigo for the weekend and decided to attend an event organised by my former high school (Girton Grammar School). The annual Foundation Day Service is held in the Sacred Heart Cathedral and this year honoured the one hundred and thirty third year of the school. My Father was just one of many members of the school Board, and asked me to accompany him to the event. This is of course was very fitting given that I was not only a past student, but also the school captain of 2013. My father courteously advised the school of my attendance to which they replied and specifically noted that “…I respectfully ask that Angus wear appropriate attire…” for the event.”
He continued: “Now, those who know me are fully aware that I am openly gay and very confident in my often “bold” choices of fashion. (I was originally considering rocking a dress and some killer heels!) However, I decided to “tone down” my appearance and be respectful to their wishes. Therefore, I decided to wear minimal makeup, a single small earring, neat black leather pants, a white shirt with a black bow tie and black designer jacket. A suit by any definition of the word, although not in the typical commercial fabrics. Upon my arrival at the Cathedral, after greeting a lot of excited staff and students on my way in, I was approached by the deputy head at the aisle and without even greeting me she told me I was “inappropriately dressed” and commanded that I “…leave the event.”“
“To avoid further embarrassment and a potentially ugly scene, I decided to graciously turn away and walk out. Although my Father as a Board member (at the time…he has since resigned!) had duties to perform at the service, he was so disgraced by my refusal of entry that he departed with me to support me in my rejection. The situation is now growing greater awareness as people who saw what happened talk and I have had an outstanding amount of support and encouragement from a lot of family and friends so far which has been amazing. My family and I are incredibly hurt by the actions, which have been exercised against me and despite trying to remain my bubbly and confident self, this is eating away at the core of who I am, not to mention the utter sense of despair I have suffered in being turned away by the school with which I was once so proud to be associated with.”
He went on: “Since I have not been contacted by anyone currently at the school let alone received any remote form of apology or acknowledgment, I have decided it is time to take things further. I am not only seeking fair treatment for myself, but I also want to fight for all those people out there who don’t have a voice, who don’t know who they are and who can’t openly express themselves. Its 2016! This kind of discrimination against any person regardless of their gender, race, sexual orientation or beliefs is just utterly appalling. Funnily enough, the school seems to believe that this issue will disappear and not affect their reputation or enrolments.“
Angus concluded with: “If you truly believe that I have been mistreated by the School, the best way that you can assist for now, is to write an email to the Headmaster (as long or short as you like) at ([email protected]) and express your concerns directly to him. He needs to hear that the community does not condone this intolerable behaviour in our society today. I have attached a photo of my outfit from the evening below if you wish to make your own judgment on what you think is “appropriate or inappropriate”.
Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy lives to read this, it truly means a lot to me.”
Here’s another look at what Angus wore and what the school deemed as “inappropriate”.
Angus’ father, who was a board member at the school, has resigned after the incident.
Following the event, Girton Grammar headmaster Matthew Maruff issued a statement saying the it was “an issue of dress code for occasion and institution, not one of sexual discrimination“.
What do you think?