Two days ago, I started seeing the news reports about “Noel”. An 18 year old High School Senior, who as articles have read, “Expelled for being adult film star” “Suspended gay student from straight bullying” ect. and then some as I dug headline after headline deeper into this outraged rabbit hole that spawned from a reddit thread from /r/gaybro, that has now since been taken down.
Now I like most went instantly to my closest and dug out my soapbox, my activist gear and was ready to march for war. Boy was I glad I didn’t, but what makes me so different than you caring and outraged readers out there?
Well, I! unlike 90% of OUTRAGED people actually LIVE in Brevard County Florida, and am a graduate from their Public School System. Cocoa is less than 20 miles from me and lucky enough for me, a 20 year history of living here comes in handy when you’ve got 3 facebooks and friends who work everywhere. I have a first hand account from teachers at Cocoa High that report all of this “reported” information and is false and/or over embellished. Now one of my sources is so dear to me I know gay rights is a massive hot button issue and there is no job they would lie for against gay progress.
“Noel” aka Robert Marucci, is a self identified straight man and is a 18 year old GAY for PAY actor, for Sean Cody. Now while I don’t care about his sexual orientation, the rest of the world seems to, so lets get it right. But then again, any guy who can bottom for Sean Cody actor’s isn’t “straight” to me, but to rally the gay bandwagons on the word of reddit and online rumors taken out of context, just goes to show the powder keg we live in down in Sunny Florida. Add the obvious plethora of misinformation readily available for students and their parents and it’s a PR nightmare waiting to happen, as we just learned.
10 years ago I found myself in the middle of a struggle JUST like Robert. My principal, a DOCTOR who is now a sitting member of our school board, flat out refused the forming of the counties FIRST Gay Straight Alliance in his school. It took a year long fight in a redittless world along with the ACLU at the front door to FORCE his hand in making it happen. Brevard, like much of the south is an abstinence only county, but what does this have to do with Robert?
As reported to me by reliable in school sources I have confirmed these things.
Robert, the student in question isn’t gay. It was a gay-for-pay scenario. (Not that that really matters) but this was an example of bullying, which against ANYONE GLBT or ally alike is a travesty of our modern era. Bullying in schools is wrong. Doesn’t matter who. But if him being “GAY” is what matters to the media, him with his own words never identifying himself as homosexual means more to me.
He wasn’t suspended for doing porn or for being gay or anything that the media has gotten ahold of.
There were reported threats made about bringing a weapon to school.
He was suspended while the investigation was going on
He was told that if it was found that he wasn’t a threat he would be able to return to school.
He was never expelled.
He returns to school tomorrow.
Now in Brevard we have a no tolerance for any kind of violent comment. Much like ANY school board in the nation. Now did Robert make these comments? Or was a comment made by one of his haters and that caused the suspensions. I still don’t know and I imagine most never will. What I do know is that once an accusation like that has been made, all parties involved have to take a suspension while an investigation occurs.
My source goes on to explain “You know me well enough to know that if this were an issue of this kid’s rights being violated, I would be all over it. I can’t say any more, but I can assure you that in no way, did the school violate his rights or expel him for doing gay porn.”
What a legal aged student does off campus isn’t something Brevard worries itself over. There to my knowledge has never been a persecuted student, gay or otherwise. But socially in an environment when surrounded by immature people most underage, being a porn actor, again gay or otherwise is going to raise a scandal. This was all executed poorly and not taken care of properly because of one thing. Education.
Sexual education in our country is a joke, even more so here in the bible belt and deep south. We LITERALLY share a county with an active KKK group. Progress has never been high up on the list of our public education systems, but another faculty source had this to say,
“Honestly, I can tell you that my principal and the rest of the admin did a really good job of counseling him about it when it was discovered. (Robert) Had guidance and admin checking up with him to make sure he wasn’t getting any flack from kids, and went over how important it was that it stay out of the hands of the underage kids. There was some definite miscommunication and I think his mother and some of her friends blew it all out of proportion.”
Now in no way am I gonna aim this at him, his family and his supporters. But the school board isn’t the one to blame. Time are tough, the oldest profession, be it on screen or off has always been a viable solution when things get bad and Robert helped provide for his family in a way that he was consenting and comfortable with knowing full well that it could always get out. But again this is not ONE parties fault.
Brevard School Board lacks any training and scripture for anything like this. They are broke, closing schools and have a hard time at keeping up with social changes. And on the other hand we have a very active and bored underage population here in Brevard with access to many social media sites that don’t require a lot fact checking. All the blogs I seemed to have read and news articles all lean heavy towards accounts from Robert and his friends. The school and the County have had little, to no time to prepare a statement let alone a defense for the size of attack they are facing. I went to their poor Facebook account and read all the people bashing them and even a tweet about how “rude” the staff was on the phone. They take care of over 1200 students and a beehive was just dropped on their switchboard, I’d be kinda short with people too. Are they handling it well? No, no they aren’t, not at all. But again this is because of a lack of information, enlightenment and training.
Okay so that’s what’s been said and what’s been done. So lets accurately summarize as the news loves to do.
18 year old Gay for Pay actor, Robert/Noel is discovered by peers as an adult actor and a scandal is born. Instantly the student starts gaining gossip and interest and as a result the word “Gun” and “School” are mentioned too close together for the administrations liking and he was suspended while everything was under investigated. In the mean time, students took to rioting and staging walkouts in support of a “gay” student. He has been allowed to go back to school and I’m sure with the proper amount of effort he can and will graduate with his class.
Now what can you do with all this pent up rage and energy for wanting CHANGE NOW! Well please don’t stop calling the school board. But start calling for a new reason. The students were as just to blame as this as the School Board. And education is something we need. This is bigger than Robert, bigger than me and even bigger than Matthew Shepard. This is about educating future generations about things that have become sexual taboos in everyday society.
Start petitioning Brevard for better Sexual Education and to no longer teach Abstinence only. Brevard is state leader in teenage pregnancy as well as new STD infection in young adults and a terrifying infection rate of HIV. This county is in crisis and needs reformatting socially and health wise and our younger generations lead the charge. If you’re gonna call, or email. Do it for the right reason, an actual fix for the problem, not a martyr and a quick patch.
While I’m sure this has been traumatic on him, this is no picnic for the school, the staff and the Board. I will myself be at the school board meeting in just a few hours to speak about this very issue. On a day VERY important to us Floridians as we have officially started legal proceedings to make Gay Marriage Florida’s next step.
Drake aka BloggerBear