October 27th, 2010
08:52 PM ET

Evening Buzz: School Official's Anti-Gay Rant

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

A school board official in eastern Arkansas is under fire for an anti-gay rant on Facebook.

Clint McCance, the Vice President of the Midland School District, was apparently not happy with a call last Wednesday to wear the color purple to support lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students.

Before I share McCance's tirade on Facebook, I want to warn you. You might find the language offensive.

Also keep in mind, what you’ll read is his misspellings.

Here's his posting:

"Seriously," McCance writes, "They want me to wear purple because five queers committed suicide. The only way im wearin it for them is if they all commit suicide. I cant believe the people of this word have gotten this stupid."

McCance goes on, "We are honoring the fact they sinned and killed thereselves because of their sin. REALLY PEOPLE."

Six people actually pressed the 'like button on that post. But others fired back.

McCance responded in part with this:

"It pisses me off though that we make special purple fag day for them. I like that fags can't procreate. I also enjoy the fact that they often give each other AIDS and die."

Dean Stanley, superintendent of Midland School District denounced McCance's comments.

"This post does not reflect the thoughts of the board or administration of the Midland School District," said Stanley

in a statement.

"The district strives to foster an environment that discourages all forms of bullying and an environment that encourages a safe and productive educational climate of all of our students. The district is very diligent in pursuing and addressing bullying of any variety on our campuses," he added.

The state Department of Education and Arkansas School Boards Association also released statements against McCance's comments.

The Department of Education pointed out because McCance is an elected official it has no way to deal with him directly. So, should disciplinary action be taken against him? We'll talk with Anthony Turner, a graduate of Midland High School, who wrote a letter to the school board about McCance, and Rosalind Wiseman, author of "Queen Bees and Wannabees: Helping your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends and the New Realities of Girl World", the best-selling book that was the basis for the movie "Mean Girls."

There are also developments in Haiti where Dr. Sanjay Gupta is tracking the deadly cholera outbreak. There are more deaths and more anger. This all could have been prevented. Too many patients are waiting for supplies. We're Keeping Them Honest.

And here at home, we're tracking some of the dirtiest races as we countdown to Election Day - just six days away.

Join us for these stories and much more starting at 10 p.m. ET. See you then.

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. Mischel Turner

    The Arkansas school board should boot Mr. McCance out of his position as VP of the school board. True, he has the right to speak his mind, but does someone who openly admits that he is homophobic have the right to bash the very people (children) that he has a voice in leading? Shame on him for publicly posting such vicious and lewd comments. The children and parents of that school district should run for their lives!

    October 28, 2010 at 9:31 am |
  2. Jorge

    I watched and heard about this last night. It's appalling to me that people like this claim to be Christians. I'm a Bible believing Christian and what this men did is not Biblical. Homosexuality is condemned but not the homosexual. Christ was about loving all and died for all. This men nor anyone that thinks like him is a child of the God of the Bible, he's a fraud and a liar. I don't agree with Homosexuality as I don't agree with abortion and those controversial issues; but as a Christian I love these people with the very love that Christ loved and died for me. The Bible states that God gave us the free will to choose it is not for man to change that.

    October 28, 2010 at 9:29 am |
  3. Jeffrey Duckworth

    I sincerely feel that he should be removed from his position. As a homosexual male, who at the beginning of his high school career, decided to come out of the closet, I know the awful things that many newly discovered homosexuals encounter in the school environment. He is in a position of influence and if kids can't come to him if they are suffering from bullying because of their sexuality, where will they go? As much as we would like to believe that personal beliefs and professional careers can be kept separate, based on his obvious dislike for homosexuals I don't belief he is suited.

    October 28, 2010 at 9:25 am |
  4. letha

    I raised my 5 children in Pleasant Plains and they graduated from Midland. I also had grandchildren to graduate from there. I want to let you know that most of the people from that area doesn't support Clints way of thinking. There is a lot of good people there. I'm against bulling in any form and I hope this doesn't make the nation think all people from that area is so narrow minded just because of one mans comments.

    October 28, 2010 at 6:39 am |
  5. Jasper T

    I think he had every right to say what he wanted he was not at work when he said it it was on a public domain where he said it. I congratulate the man for standing up against gays. America needs to grow a backbone and stand up for God you know the guy our country was founded on. Bravo i applaud you McCance You should have been nicer about the post but you are right they did sin and do not need to be honored for that.

    October 28, 2010 at 5:20 am |
  6. Deanna Zak

    This is partially what's wrong with our education system in this country. It is obvious this man cannot spell, cannot speak proper English, and to top it off, comes out with such despicable statements and opinions. What were the people who hired him (or elected him, if that is the case) thinking?!

    October 28, 2010 at 5:19 am |
  7. CB

    I really love how the 'free speechers' pop up when it is someone/something they support.
    He is a member of a school board, and thinks that children who do not believe the way he does should KILL themselves. What kind of society do we live in where adults think children should KILL themselves because they are different? Sure he has the right to free speech like everyone else, however, where is the line drawn? His hate words could cause harm to children, those who he was elected to support! If someone yells "fire" in crowded theatre, "hi-jack" on a passenger jet or threatens the President, even though they aren't viable threats…is that protected free speech? Sure you can have free speech, but you are also liable for your actions. If one child commits suicide or is bullied in his school district because of his words, would you still stand by him and his right to free (hate) speech? There is no excuse for him putting children, our children, children of God in harms way. I feel sorry for those of you who support this man…you show the same amount of ignorance.

    October 28, 2010 at 3:00 am |
  8. misty bacon

    i am pissed that people act like this i am strait married and have three kids but i also have three of my freinds that are gay and there is nothing wrong with them they care, love, hate, and cry just the same as we all do. there is nothing wrong with being gay if my kids became gay i would support them if it is what they want then they have every right to have it you would not tell your kids no if they wanted to be a doctor and save lives so why would you tell them no on being gay if thats what they want let them have it i will support my contry and its freedom
    misty bacon hurricane ut

    October 28, 2010 at 2:56 am |
  9. Patricia

    I am very disappointed at what this school official said. As a citizen of this world, we have an obligation to be civil towards one another in our talk and actions. As a U.S. citizen, it’s important to remember that freedom of speech should not be done in a hostile manner. The first amendment states that freedom of speech is the free exercise of the press or the right of the people to assemble peaceably. As a Christian, the standards are even higher: “let your conversation be always full of grace…” (Colossians 4:6); “…in your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned…” (Titus 2:7-8); “show proper respect to everyone”(1 Peter 2:17); and lastly “we should love one another…anyone who hates his brother is a murderer…”(1 John 3:11, 15). Our goal should be to love all people and learn to live harmoniously with one another despite our differences and disagreements.

    October 28, 2010 at 2:45 am |
  10. TS

    Somehow agree with McCance`s comment, as an official he shold express his views. It`s not fair on the rest of the straight students. Much of the comments do not discourage homosexuality, but move on to "acceptance". Wake up people it`s a sin and GOD actually distroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for much the same reason. STOP same-sex marriage and more important child adoption.
    And Mr Cooper 360° means all round, so be fair and get his side, the students, and not just two pro-gay individuals.

    October 28, 2010 at 2:43 am |
  11. Brent Dickson

    Thank you. I'm fortunate to have graduated from a high school that promoted tolerance, regardless of personal beliefs. Students of the Midland School District deserve the same.

    October 28, 2010 at 2:22 am |
  12. Kasey

    I'm from a small town in eastern Arkanswander my mom is a school teacher. I'm appalled at Clint McCance's rant. It's an embarrassment to Arkansas as a state as well as a disgrace to the public school system of Arkansas. McCance should be immediately removed from the school board. Child suicide, as a consequence of bullying, is a major issue in today's society. If children are caught bullying they face repercussions, shouldn't adults be held to the same standard? As young adults or older members of a community we should be examples to children. Clearly Clint McCance is not a good example and ge is a misreprepresentaion of school officials of the state of Arkansas

    October 28, 2010 at 2:20 am |
  13. Suzanne

    In response to what should be done with this hateful school board member...can American's impeach a President? Absolutely this entity can be, and should be removed...figure it out!

    October 28, 2010 at 2:18 am |
  14. lilly

    Thank you Anderson, for once again showing your commitment to calling out these deplorable people. I have spent much of day signing petitions, and attempting to email these cowards on the school board. They shut down their emails, and will not take phone calls.

    I wish I could be at the rally that is planned for tomorrow, but I sure as hell we be there in spirit!!

    October 28, 2010 at 2:05 am |
  15. jo

    if he had made those comments about any other group of people, there would have been an immediate public outcry. silence is cndoning. if this arkansas community does not publicly, openly, and very strongly oppose this man's intolerant and cruel opinions, then their silence will support it.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:50 am |
  16. Morgan

    This is outrageous. As a student who is currently doing a production of the musical bare: a pop opera which is about two gay students in a catholic school and one of them does end up committing suicide, I cannot believe that someone could be so small minded and disrespectful. Being gay is not something that should be considered a sin and it is a horrible tragedy that these young men had to take their own lives to get rid of their ridicules. To have someone who is a school board member display this kind of behavior is the reason why students find it okay to torment gay and lesbian men and women. This man needs to be taken off the school board because he is clearly not a suitable influence to the students that he represents.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:43 am |
  17. John

    Everyone has turned into hypocrites. It's now politically correct to have to love gays but must hate haters. Haters are as delusional as gays and everyone that is on the PC bandwagon. If haters cannot speak their hate, how will anyone know they hate. What if the oppression of haters causes them to turn violent. Would it not be better to to let them speak and then encourage reason?

    October 28, 2010 at 1:41 am |
  18. Hanford Searl Jr.

    ... "Stupid IS as stupid DOES," Forrest Gump.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:34 am |
  19. Sally

    I don't think that a person with those views could possibly be capable of enforcing any anti-bullying policy.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:34 am |
  20. Kenn Chaplin

    This was a dreadful, but important, story to tell.

    I'll probably be up later thanI should be reminding myself that it's 2010, not 1970, and even though I was bullied and degraded by an elementary school principal for about six years back then, I have survived that monster and a whole lot of other things in life.

    Hats off to your guests for their helpful thoughts and ideas.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:29 am |
  21. sharon

    Mr McCance should remember to do unto others as he would have them do unto him. He should man up and step down.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:29 am |
  22. LRM

    For those who are arguing that "he can say whatever he wants" need to realize that this man is an elected official representing the people who voted for him. Unfortunately children cannot vote so it is up to us to ensure their wellbeing in school regardless of who they are. I'm sure some of the kids who committed suicide are not even gay but the stigma of being called "fag" or any other disgusting slur everyday takes a toll. Point is stopping bullying isn't just for lgbt youth but benefits every student.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:28 am |
  23. Steven in So Cal

    It's nice to read the responses here. It's even good to read those from folks who agree that it is okay for an ELECTED PUBLIC OFFICIAL to celebrate children killing themselves. It's even good to read those folks who agree with him – it's simply a First Amendment issue – he's free to condemn children to death!!!

    Oh, and it's even good to read the comment by the person above who made this a race issue – what about all the children of color who have endure torment because of their race, much less their sexuality.

    It's great we're in America where all points of view are equally voiced. What's NOT OKAY is people encouraging A GENOCIDE against an entire group of people.

    This elected school board member is way out of line. The days where BIGOTRY, HATRED, RACISM in this country are waaaaaaaaay gone for most Americans. Can't speak for those of you who don't live in major metropolises... but yeah. Get a clue. Gays, Lesbians, People of Color, Women, we're all pretty pissed off about how things have been for... oh, CENTURIES!!!!

    And we're NOT going to stand for your hatred any longer.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:27 am |
  24. Karen

    This State does not have recall proceedures for any elected official and that should be a story.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:26 am |
  25. mike

    unfortunately, mr. mccance apparently does represent the local opinion, although not the PUBLIC local opinion. the fact that he made the comments so brazenly on a facebook rant, along with the fact that the school board has only VERBALLY disagreed with his opinion indicate this. action speaks louder than words. he would have been fired in 5 minutes if he were in a more tolerant community. i am sad for any parents who had to hear such cruelty about their lost child.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:23 am |
  26. Karen

    freedom of speech should not be an outlet for spreading hate – common sense

    October 28, 2010 at 1:19 am |
  27. Keith

    I must say that I support Clint's right to freedom of speech, SO LONG AS WE CUT HIS TONGUE OUT FIRST! I surely hope that Clint (obviously a nurturing father of a present bully) and all those folks filled with such hatrid believe in KARMA.

    I say we send him something purple every day for the rest of his life.

    October 28, 2010 at 1:05 am |
  28. Maria

    his comment is despicable. How can a human, in this civilized world, speaks this way? Bullying in any form should not be tolerated. Good job AC and Dr. Gupta on Haiti's cholera outbreak. God bless you all!

    October 28, 2010 at 12:02 am |
  29. victor

    Mr.MCcance's actions are an embarrassment to the board of education and the community. He has compromised the safety of the kids he is supposed to protect. He should be expelled from the board and disciplined accordingly.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:40 pm |
  30. Melissa Marks

    I've known Clint McCance since we were in the second grade. He is not a monster! He is a good man who used poor judgement when he made these hateful comments. I don't know what made him say the things he did, but I'm sure he doesn't want kids to kill themselves. While I do not agree with the things Clint said, I do believe in his right to say them. I think it's important to remember that these comments were written on his personal Facebook page to be read by his friends. It seems to me that this whole situation has been blown out of proportion. His comments could have and should have been handled differently. He's being bashed because of his hateful comments, but there is a huge campaign of hatred against him. Answering hate with hate is not the solution!

    October 27, 2010 at 11:38 pm |
  31. Linda

    This is not a gay issue, it is s teen suicide issue. The teen suicide rate is staggering in this country. The bullying issue is outrageous but with all the talk about the gays being bullied are we forgetting that- or not listening to the child that is being bullied because they are poor, or because the divorce of their parents and the disabilities that they may have and so and so forth. We are getting off the real issue of teaching our young people to care for one another. This grown man who rants on facebook is proof of that. What kind of children did he raise with this type of distasteful ranting?

    October 27, 2010 at 11:31 pm |
  32. Fred Miller

    I just saw this on tv and it really blows me away. Not that saying such horrible MEAN things would be alright from anyone, but to hear it from an elected school official is so shocking its just really unbelievable to me. We are talking about a grown man who is supposed to care about children for a living. His job is to make sure your children are in a safe friendly environment and do not feel threatened in any way shape or form to insure they can focus strictly on learning. Being a teenager in middle school and high school is the most socially awkward and difficult part of life, not to mention the most IMPORTANT in reguards to social interaction. This man is encouraging homosexual students to commit suicide and showing absolutely zero compassion towards the families who have lost their sons.

    The biggest travesty about this entire situation is Mr. McCants will go on about his job and life without any recourse. He should not be allowed to continue with that job if he is actually admitting he would like it if all the gay students killed themselves. Life is hard enough as a teenager with all the bullies in class without the addition of a hateful bully of a staff member encouraging suicide.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:28 pm |
  33. Troy Brauchlae

    I am writing with tears on my face. I can't understand the hate that came from this 'official'. I am gay, and I hate to disappoint him that I do have children and grandchildren. If they were in his school district, I personally would pay for them to get out of it. I am absolutely appalled that this official promotes hate!

    October 27, 2010 at 11:25 pm |
  34. Ernie

    I was absolutely dis-respected by his comments. I am a gay male who also is a NATURAL parent of 3 beautiful children. I would be outraged if he was on my school board. This is totally against the values of the bible and my family. What happened to Thou shall not judge!

    October 27, 2010 at 11:23 pm |
  35. C

    I'm confused is this about bullying or gay rights? I'm also confused about the things Anthony said during the program. I went to school with Anthony and knew him well. Anthony was the manager of the boys basketball team, very smart, popular, and liked by everyone students and teachers alike. In no way was he bullied, especially about being gay considering the fact that he didn't make that public until years after high school. I'm not condoning the things Clint said, but this is our town and our school and we will handle it without the help of the media. Why don't you do a report on the threats people are making toward Clint's family, or the fact the kids are worried about going to school tomorrow, or best of all the gay rights activists who are planning a protest there. Do you think that will be beneficial to the kids? So tell me again is it about bullying or gay rights because there is plenty of bullying that goes on that doesn't involve sexual orientation.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:23 pm |
  36. Cynthia San Antonio

    Children learn from example. This guy is a very bad example to our kids (and he works with the school distrist? OMG!) He should be voted out. Now!

    October 27, 2010 at 11:23 pm |
  37. Krista

    For the people saying it's his freedom of speech, you are 110% correct. It's his right to be hateful and to make himself look like a total bigot. It's also the media's right to expose him as the idiot that he truly is.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:22 pm |
  38. Jereme Scott

    Clint McCance should be fired without a doubt. The question we have to ask ourselves is do we want to have people like this working with children? Our adults are suppose to set the tone for children and this man is beyond reasonable. Let me know what I can do to help him get fired.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:21 pm |
  39. felicia

    I love that I am from the Western side of Arkansas, where there is at the very least, a little more tolerance for the different, of every kind, I swear I hope a vote goes up for all of Arkansas to impeach this ignorant dumbass that is responsible for our kids, he can't even use freaking spell check, and he expects anyone to think he is better because he likes women! Please keep this story alive, because a lot of people in Arkansas are still in the dark ages, mostly the older generation, and someone needs to bring them into 2010.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:21 pm |
  40. Eric

    I just watched your report on this intolerant school official. I applaud you. He had a chance to explain himself and, as you said, did not take the opportunity. To those who say he is merely expressing his right to free speech: if he loves that right so much how come he did not take the opportunity to defend his views on national television? Perhaps he realizes his views are indefensible in wider a public forum.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:20 pm |

    Thanks ... Anderson Cooper and the brilliant crew at CNN ... for bringing great articles pertaining to abusive situations - not only in the gay community but throughout the world.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:19 pm |
  42. Kelby Jones

    There are limits…There is a line. And for reasons…you crossed it. You can’t yell fire in a crowded theatre and you can’t expose kids to material like this, not on the taxpayer’s dime…Don’t make it okay, they’re kids! Now more than ever High School is a dangerous place and it’s our job to guide them through it safely. – Sue Sylvester

    I don't agree with the homosexuality and yes Clint, like everyone else, has freedom of speech, however, the position he holds in our community calls for a certain amount of filtering on his part. His job is to look after the children, not suggest suicide to them.

    I just want to let everyone know that Clint's comments are no reflection upon the Midland School District or the State of Arkansas. As a graduate of Midland School I am very appreciative of the care and support I received from the educators during my high school career, and as I have made my way into the world they have prepared me for. Do not blame the school for one man's mistake.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:17 pm |
  43. Paul Reese

    Thank you for covering this Mr Cooper.
    I am a 47 Yo gay man, I am sick about these beautiful Young People loosing there life. I would have loved and kept anyone one of them and helped them through this difficult time. It does get better. I had to fight a lot as a kid to keep the bully's off my back. But it was never enough. Again thank you for covering this so well.
    I will continue to pray for these Young people and there family's

    October 27, 2010 at 11:17 pm |
  44. Jasmine

    What he said was wrong. We should spread love, not hate. He had a position that was highly regarded so he should have used more sense. He should resign. However, you should not punish the town for what one man said. While doing some research today, I was originally horrified but after seeing what is happening to his home town, I am equally more dismayed at both sides. Rioting, picketing, threats to the school, a march on campus? The whole school should not be punished for one man's harsh words. Don't condemn hate with more hate. How will people feel when they are bombarded my gay activist trying to press charges and taking over Arkansas. Let's get an apology from him, then let this all die down. Lets spread peace, love, and be the bigger person.

    October 27, 2010 at 11:03 pm |
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