June is graduation month, so when the person at the lectern says save your applause until all the graduates’ names have been called, it is probably best to heed that warning, especially if you live in Mississippi.
Police have issued warrants (that’s right, warrants) for four people who shouted or cheered during Senatobia High School’s graduation ceremony.
According to WREG, “Police at Northwest Mississippi Community College, where the high school ceremony was held, said the superintendent asked the crowd not to scream and to hold their applause until the end.”
Those who did shout left the graduation without any problems, accepting the agreed-upon punishment for shouting. But what they didn't expect, and are now shocked by, are the warrants they have received.
“My 18-year-old daughter, Lanarcia Walker, graduated from Senatobia High,” Linda Walker told the news station. “Lanarcia’s father, Henry Walker, yelled out, ‘You did it baby,’ waved his towel and went out the door.”
“When she went across the stage, I just called her name out. ‘Lakaydra.’ Just like that,” another graduation attendee, Ursula Miller, told the news station, speaking of her reaction to seeing her niece.
Miller, Henry Walker and two other people who reportedly cheered during the ceremony were asked to leave. Now the four people who were tossed for expressing natural, joyous emotions during a celebratory event have been charged with disturbing the peace and are being threatened with possible jail time.
“It’s crazy,” Henry Walker said. “The fact that I might have to bond out of jail, pay court costs or a $500 fine for expressing my love—it’s ridiculous, man. It’s ridiculous.”
School Superintendent Jay Foster told the news station off camera that he doesn’t believe the charges are unfair and vowed to have order during graduation proceedings.
“OK,” Miller told WREG. “I can understand they can escort me out of the graduation, but to say they going to put me in jail for it, what else are they allowed to do?”
The families have all expressed that they don’t have the money to fight the charges in court, and WREG notes that all “four people charged are expected in court Monday, June 9.”
Read more at WREG.