Did you win any senior superlatives in high school? I did, but not anything cool. I was dubbed “Most Unique Hair,” mostly owing to the fact that I was the only girl in my grade that had a short pixie haircut at the time. Even back then, I knew that “most unique hair” was one of those weird backhanded compliment kind of categories, but whatever. Look at my hair now.
Anyway, students at Carmel High School in Carmel, New York, chose their senior superlatives for the class of 2013, and for the first time in the history of the school — and maybe ever? — a same sex couple was chosen for the honor of cutest couple. Dylan Meehan and Brad Taylor — both of whom have great hair, by the way — were floored when a yearbook photo of them went way viral on the the Interwebs after their friend Chelsea Blaney posted it to her Tumblr.
“Two of my best friends won Cutest Couple of our senior class,” Blaney wrote. “First time in my school history a same sex couple has even been able to run for this category, not to mention winning it. So proud of them, and my school.” The picture, and Chelsea’s sentiment, has so far been shared more than 100,000 times on the blog platform site.
“This whole thing has been a bit surreal for us because we have been raised to believe that love is love,” said Dylan and Brad in a statement to The Huffington Post. “We never realized that our happiness and openness would inspire so many individuals. The support we have received from our family, friends, and even strangers has led us to believe that our affection for each other is normal … When we started dating a year [ago], the thought of a photo of us traveling throughout the world would be a bit frightening, but now we are proud to be part of the LGBT community.”
Brad, Dylan and Carmel High should be proud — their choice as Cutest Couple is an impressive sign of acceptance and progress. When I was in high school, kids were bullied on the regular for being gay, and absolutely no one was out in my tiny high school graduating class of 173 people (though there were most certainly gay kids in the bunch). A few short years later, when my brother and sister attended high school, they both had several out friends, and it wasn’t a huge deal. Stories like this one demonstrate that social attitudes are changing, at least in some places, even if change can’t come fast enough. [Huffington Post]