Girls expelled for possibly being lesbians

Two California teens sue their school for invasion of privacy and discrimination.

Published January 3, 2006 1:10PM (EST)

Thanks to Feministing for pointing out this high school horror story. It seems that two 16-year-old girls in California were expelled from their Lutheran high school because they were suspected of being lesbians. That's right, even though school officials admit they have never seen physical contact between the girls, their friendship was described by principal Gregory Bork as "uncharacteristic of normal girl relationships and more characteristic of a lesbian one." So he booted them.

The girls sued the school last week for invasion of privacy and discrimination; they are seeking reenrollment, an injunction barring the school from excluding gays and lesbians, and unspecified damages.

The girls' lawsuit claims that Bork called them into his office, grilled them about their sexual orientation and then "coerced" one of the girls into admitting that she loved the other one. "Their entire support network was pulled out from under them because of suspicions about their sexual orientation," the girls' attorney, Kurt Hanson, told the Associated Press.

But the fact that the girls are traumatized and humiliated seems unlikely to move Bork. In a letter to the girls' parents, the principal said the friendship was "scandalous" and "immoral" and therefore violated the school's "Christian Code of Conduct."

By Lori Leibovich

Lori Leibovich is a contributing editor at Salon and the former editor of the Life section.

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