Brandon Allen was crowned homecoming royalty at White Station High School's homecoming celebrations last Friday night.
When accepting his crown, he rocked an absolutely fabulous gold sequined gown.
The Memphis, Tennessee school posted a congratulatory photo of Brandon being crowned to their Facebook page and it quickly drew a lot of attention.
Unfortunately, not everyone's response to the social media post was supportive. Principal Carrye Holland was having none of the negativity and cyber bullying, though.
She quickly shut down the haters on the school's Facebook share of Brandon accepting his crown.
"Here's the thing: it's Brandon's right to run for homecoming court under Title IX. It's the students' choice of who they want to support as homecoming royalty."
"I'm exceedingly proud to be the principal of our amazing school. You don't have to agree but disrespectful comments will be deleted."
"WSHS loves and supports everyone regardless of who they are or what they believe. Thank you for the love and light from so many of you."
Allen, who identifies as gay and calls himself the "Queen of Extra", chose to wear the gown because it made him feel royal. He was stressed out about the whole thing and said his win came as a huge relief.
"So I want to rock a dress and look like a queen."
White Station High School recently made the switch to using the gender-neutral "homecoming royalty" instead of "homecoming king and queen" in an effort towards inclusivity.
Emmett Campbell, the student who snapped the now-famous photo of Brandon's coronation, attributes this change for the better to Principal Holland.
Campbell told HuffPost:
"She genuinely cares about us as students and puts in the effort to make us feel comfortable at school."
Principal Campbell isn't the only one supporting students' right to self-expression, though. Superintendent Joris Ray also spoke out in support of White Station High School and Brandon.
...based 100 percent on student votes. As Superintendent, I support student voice and expression.— Dr. Joris M. Ray (@Dr. Joris M. Ray) 1569724426.0
Among the responses to Allen's crowning on Facebook, many alumni offered congratulations.
Heather Fiveash Gallogly/Facebook
Candace Yvette Wade/Facebook
Current students and parents also spoke out to support Brandon.
Lara Thompson Hunter/Facebook
Brandon himself was very thankful for Principal Holland's support, but was not particularly bothered by the negative online feedback, stating:
"I don't really care."
He did have a lot to say about the importance of staying true to yourself.
"Don't you dare ever change yourself for anyone else but you! You are beautiful you are unique and you're special. Don't ever second guess your existence or feelings for a second."
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