Three years ago Brandon McInerney pulled a gun out and shot his classmate, 15-year-old Larry King in the back of the head twice in their classroom at E.O. Green Junior High in Oxnard, CA. But it’s okay because he was gay and he was totally asking for it.
At least that’s the defense his lawyer is seemingly attempting to make.
On top of the capital offense of being a gay 14-year-old boy, King also had apparently begun wearing high heeled women’s boots and make-up to school. According to King’s English teacher Jill Ekman, King’s special education plan called for him not to draw attention to himself. Unfortunately when you’re a 14-year-old male in make-up and high heels that becomes a little difficult to do.
When Elkman saw King wearing mascara and eyeliner to school she told him to go and wash it off, she testified in court (on behalf of the defense, of course). But then evil old Assistant Principal Joy Epstein had to step in and tell King that as it turns out, in America you can wear whatever you want to school. It was his right wear girl’s clothing items “as long as they were within the school’s dress code.”
The day before he was shot in the back of the head, King was seen walking (excuse me, “parading” – in the words of school history teacher Arthur Saenz) in front of his soon-to-be murderer. Boys around began to burst into laughter as McInerney grew more and more visibly upset. A short time before this, McInterney and King had passed by one another in the hallways after lunch. King noticed Mcinterney and had mockingly said, “Love you baby!” It had all become too much.
According to the defense, Brandon McInerney pulled the trigger, there’s no doubt about that. But you see, he was pushed to that point. Pushed over the edge. He snapped. His gay-dometer peaked and so he did what any one under duress would do. He walked into a classroom, sat down behind someone and then fired two rounds into the back of their skull.
So, did the school administration miss all the warning signs? Should the principal have paid more attention to the warnings of teachers like Elkman and Saenz? It all seems like the type of endless finger pointing and minutiae that tend to entangle us as a society after a tragedy like this one. Surely no one on any kind of jury would look at this situation and say that things could have worked out better if only King had straightened up and flew right. Right?
But if you follow the defense’s line of thinking I guess the end goal legal precedent here is something along the lines of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell… Or I’ll blow your brains out.”