'The Laramie Project' High School Production Gets the Boot in Fullerton

Categories: Culture, Theater

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Tim Chesnut

Four years ago, Fred Phelps, the now banished (and the God-who-Hates-Fags-willing soon to be dead) founder of the Westboro Baptist Church, announced plans to boycott a Santa Ana staging of The Laramie Project, an oral history project turned play that documented the events surrounding the 1998 killing of Matthew Shepard in Laramie, Wyoming and, most important, the repercussions in that university town two years later.

It's doubtful that Dr. George Giokaris, the superintendent of the Fullerton Union High School District, shares Phelps' views, but, apparently, he's got something against Troy High School producing the play, because he's put the kibosh on a production.

Earlier this year, The Laramie Projectwas proposed as the school's spring, open-audition play. It was soon nixed by Dr. Giokaris for "containing mature themes," according to a post on an on-line petition site, gsanetwork.org.

"Our school has put on plays containing mature themes before, with To Kill a Mockingbird (containing themes of rape, racism, and violence), The Cat and the Canary (in which a character was shown hanged and others shot on stage), and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (blunt depictions of abuse in mental institutions)," says the on-line post, which is not attributed. The Laramie Project is no worse ( and likely more appropriate) than many plays we have put on in the past. Our drama department has the right to put on this production, and does not deserve to be the victim of injustice."



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10 comments
Bhattacharya
Bhattacharya

Gay bashing victims will face the same public opinion court as gay bashers. If there are ugly truths about a homosexual which the media omits as most media did with Methew Wayne Shepard, then we will use our free speech rights to tell the ugly truths about the homosexual even if others dislike it. & there is nothing the any1, be it media or cops can do to legally stop us from telling the ugly truths. Gay bashing victims will face the public opinion court as gay bashers and ugly truths will be told about a homosexual though it offends homosexual groups.


No, I don’t think Methew W. Shepard should have been killed but Methew W. Shepard molested 8 year old boys and got counseling for this when he was 15 years old-that is verified information and Stephen Jimenez incidentally mentioned this near end of book-he interviewed a Casper Wyoming cop and a relative of 1 of victims. The 2 boys who Methew W. Shepard molested is verified by Natrona County Juvenile Court records, the Cody Woming bartender who was victimized by Methew W. Shepard in August 1998 and which is backed by Cody Wyoming police reports.

Judy L. Shepard and the Shepard Foundation omits this ugly truth of Methew W. Shepard being a child molester and it would not surprise me if ex Casper Star Tribune journalists Tiffany C. Hunt, Kerry A. Drake and JC Marsden know this but left this out in that I find it hard to believe these 3 Casper Wyoming journalists did not know about Methew W. Shepard molesting 8 year old boys when he was 15 years old because Stephen Jimenez found this in court records and again, Stephen Jimenez incidentally mentioned this near end of book as most of the book was about the 3 people, A.J. McKinney’s problems, Methew W. Shepard’s life and problems and of course the drug problems. Incidentally, it’s possible that Methew W. Shepard had molested more boys other than the 2 case reported to cops. Both JC Marsden & Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt sees nothing wrong with Methew W. Shepard selling drugs and molesting children so their view is rubbish.

Bhattacharya
Bhattacharya

I spoke November 3, 2014 to Dennis W. Shepard (Methew W. Shepard’s dad) by calling his house-I found his phone # on Internet. I first asked him if he was the late Methew Shepard’s dad which he verified. I then told him that his son was a drug dealer (his son was a junky who associated with drug dealers and possibly was a drug dealer/courier himself) and a child molester. He said it was horseturd (profane word used) and asked where I got the information and whether I read the court documents (guessing from murder trial). I replied by telling Dennis that his son was a drug dealer and child molester-you know about the 8 year old boys who Methew molested & that Shepard’s exploit their son for money.


I found Mr. Dennis W. Shepard to be dishonest & he hung up on me. He said it’s horseturd but he didn’t give a rebuttal. I believe I was justified in calling Methew W. Shepard’s parents (I was trying to get his mom but instead got his dad) as Methew W. Shepard’s family exploits him for money & people need to tell them the ugly truth of who their son was. Do you think I did the right thing? I believe I did. Anyhow please share your view because don’t be surprised if the Shepard’s change their phone # as it’s possible others have done the same thing that I did which is to call the Shepard’s to tell them what a bad person their son was, especially if others have read the Book of Matt as we did. I think Mr. Dennis W.Shepard knows that some of us know the ugly truths of who his son was.


Police files charges for harassment, not the victims. Calling them once to tell the truth is not harassment. Harassment is repeatedly contacting a person after they have asked you to stop contacting them. Since this happened once, it was not harassment, so it’s legal. Shepards are high profile people though they are not famous like an actor is. If the Shepard’s don’t want people calling them to tell ugly truths of Methew W. Shepard being a drug junky and a child molester, then they should get an unlisted # because that is what comes with being high profile.

Gay bashing victims will face the same public opinion court as gay bashers. If there are ugly truths about a homosexual which the media omits as they most media did with Methew Wayne Shepard, then we will use our free speech rights to tell the ugly truths about the homosexual even if others dislike it. & there is nothing the any1, be it media or cops can do to legally stop us from telling the ugly truths. Gay bashing victims will face the public opinion court as gay bashers do and ugly truths will be told about a homosexual if it’s found though it offends homosexual groups. 


Homosexual groups lecture about how homosexuals & transexuals (mutilated gays/lesbians) are bullied-yet homosexuals are apologists for homosexuals (homolesters or homosexual pedophiles which include transexuals) molesting children. Truth is that gay/lesbian groups think it’s Okay for gays to homolest boys.

Bhattacharya
Bhattacharya

I spoke on April 16, 2014 to Sheriff David S. O'Malley about Book of Matt and gave facts about Methew Wayne Shepard being a child molester and drug dealer. He predictably said Book of Matt should be called Book of Lies, that he did investigation & hung up on me without explaining why it should be called book of lies. He has no rebuttal. Chief O'Malley said he is offended by Stephen Jimenez's book but he's dishonest.


Sheriff David S. O’Malley, Cop Regina S. Fluty and Sgt. Rob J. DeBree’s all have been portrayed in Laramie Project and Sheriff O’Malley is a friend of Judy L. Shepard. But their job as cops after to they found M.W. Shepard’s comatose body was to solve M.W. Shepard’s murder and they quickly found and arrested the 2 who did this. After that their job was to help prosecutors prove the 2 men guilty of murder which they did. Since M.W. Shepard is dead, he can not be arrested and prosecuted for any crimes he committed before October 1998. I don’t believe the 2 cops investigated whether Methew W. Shepard was a drug dealer because there was no need to because he is dead and can’t be punished for it.


Sheriff David S. O’Malley, Regina S. Fluty and Sgt. Robert J. DeBree all know as cops or former cops that you don’t always know the secrets a person has in their life. All know that many to most criminals try to keep their crimes secret esp. from friends and family as they don’t want to be caught. Many times when it’s discovered a person is let’s say a child molester, it’s friends and family who get surprised because a child molester is unlikely to admit that they commit this crime to their friends and family. Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. Robert J. DeBree in their lives have arrested drug dealers and they know how it’s the family and friends who get surprised after they learned some1 they know is a drug dealer.

I don’t think Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. Robert J. DeBree are honest criticizing Stephen Jimenez as bias is meddling with facts especially again as Sheriff O’Malley is a friend of Judy Lynn Shepard. 


Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. Robert J. DeBree know that it’s unlikely Methew W. Shepard told his friends and family that he was a drug dealer, because both have seen many times as cops as how criminals usually keep their crimes a secret esp. from their friends and family. M.W. Shepard kept it a secret. Even if Methew W. Shepard did tell his friends and family that he sold drugs, don’t think his family will admit this ugly truth about him, as they had tried to hide the fact that Methew Wayne Shepard molested 8 year old boys and got counseling for it. Both Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. R.J. DeBree know as cops that they don’t always catch all the criminals. Stephen Jimenez to repeat interviewed over 100 witnesses and he did a 13 year investigation. He went into bars, interviewed drug dealers, junkies and they verified that both A.J. McKinney and M.W. Shepard knew eachother and that M.W. Shepard had a secret life as a drug dealer/courier.


Again, Sheriff O’Malley and Sgt. DeBree interest in October 1998 was to solve the homicide and to help prosecutor Mr. Rerucha prove the 2 men gulity of murder. I don’t think Sheriff David S. O’Malley, Sgt. Robert J. DeBree and any1 else in the Albany County Sheriff’s Dept. investigated M.W. Shepard’s background because there was no need to. Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. R.J. DeBree’s critique sounds like they are dishonest, delusional or both esp. again as Sheriff f O’Malley is a friend of Judy L. Shepard and Chief O’Malley, Reggie S. Fluty and Sgt. DeBree are portrayed in Laramie Project. JC Marsden (executive Director of Shepard Foundation) and Tiffany C. Hunt are portrayed in Laramie Project. Both JC Marsden & Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt sees nothing wrong with Methew W. Shepard selling drugs and molesting children so their view is rubbish. Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt abuses her 2 children so Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt thinks child abuse is OK.

Bhattacharya
Bhattacharya

I read Book of Matt by Stephen Jimenez about Methew Wayne Shepard. The book discloses ugly truths of who the victim was-most of it old news such as him being a junky (old news), but the new information is that the victim was a drug dealer. Stephen Jimenez who is homose interviewed over 100 witnesses and found ugly truths about the victim. While Stephen Jimenez has a pro-homose bias and tried to be sympathetic to the victim, he wrote ugly truths including in Shepard's family.


-Metthew W. Shepard was himself a victim of child molestation and when Metthew W. Shepard was 15 years old, he was arrested for molesting 2 neighborhood 8 year old boys-M.W. Shepard got counseling for it.


M.W. Shepard in August 1998 (2 months before his death) attempted indecent exposure on a Cody bartender and bartender defended himself by decking M.W. Shepard. The next day, M.W. Shepard falsely accused the bartender of homosexual gang rape. When medical tests disproved M.W. Shepard, the excuse Methew W. Shepard gave to cops was that he was drunk, had PTSD and could not remember. M.W. Shepard was also once banned from a bar after a drunk M.W. Shepard committed assault and battery on the bouncer by grabbing bouncer’s crotch against will. M.W. Shepard should have been arrested and convicted by jury for those 2 incidents.


-M.W. Shepard knew his killer A.J. McKinney and there are witnesses who saw both of them together numerous almost a year before he was killed. M.W. Shepard had a secret life as a drug courier/dealer. You don’t always know the secrets friends and family have. If a person is a drug dealer, then they are usually not going to tell their friends and family that they do this. But for me, him being killed and why he was killed is a minor topic. While homose groups complain about Stephen Jimenez saying the murder case is complicated and possibly not a hate crime, I think that is incidental-main reason homose groups are offended by Stephen Jimenez’s book is because he talked about the ugly truths about who M.W. Shepard was.


The weak criticism people make is that Stephen Jimenez interviewed drug dealers, junkies, and that he went into bars where drugs were sold, to learn about M.W. Shepard being a drug dealer. That is a weak criticism because that is who Stephen Jimenez would have to interview to learn this. M.W. Shepard being a junky is old news as he had told his friends such as Tina LaBrie about his drug problems and M.W. Shepard’s lover Tristan (Ted) Henson admits that M.W. Shepard used drugs and that he knew 1 of his killers. M.W. Shepard being a drug dealer was something he likely kept secret from his friends and family because honestly, if a person is selling drugs, they usually aren’t going to tell their friends and family that they commit this crime. Even if Metthew W. Shepard did tell his friends and family that he sold drugs, don’t think his family will admit this ugly truth about him, as they had tried to hide the fact that Methew Wayne Shepard molested 8 year old boys and got counseling for it. JC Marsden (executive Director of Shepard Foundation) and Tiffany C. Hunt are portrayed in Laramie Project. Both JC Marsden & Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt sees nothing wrong with Methew W. Shepard selling drugs and molesting children so their view is rubbish. Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt abuses her 2 children so Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt thinks child abuse is OK.

livelife7679
livelife7679

"says the on-line post, which is not attributed"


Joel Beers,

How can you not attribute quotes from the original petition?  GSA Network shows that it was written and posted by Kate Dolbear.  Seems like a bit of lazy journalism.


-Troy High Alum

Kelly Hughes Davis
Kelly Hughes Davis

Grow a pair, Dr. Giokaris. Lets the kids do something mature and thoughtful.

Bhattacharya
Bhattacharya

@fishwithoutbicycle Let’s look @ what we do know about Methew W. Shepard. No matter why the murder happened, the idea that A.J. McKinney and Methew W. Shepard were strangers who did not know eachother until that day is rubbish. There are many witnesses-Doc O’ Connor’s ex girlfriend, Elaine Baker (bartender), M.K. Rohrbacher (drug dealer), Tristan (Ted) Henson (Methew W. Shepard’s former lover) & others who saw them together.


Even if 1 believes the murder was motivated by hatred of homosexuals, it is truth that A.J. McKinney and Methew W. Shepard knew eachother though A.J. McKinney denies it. There are too many witnesses who saw both men together. Of course the witnesses can only say they saw them together and can not know it all. It’s not believed Methew W. Shepard knew the 2nd man (R.A. Henderson) and I agree with Stephen Jimenez that Russell A. Henderson should have been convicted of a lesser crime such as Manslaughter and that he should have gotten a jury trial but got bad representation by his lawyers who urged him to take a plea when he wanted a jury trial. Book of Matt by Stephen Jimenez Stephen Jimenez’s evidence are 1st party witnesses he interviewed-over 100 of them over 13 years.


I don’t think Methew W. Shepard should have been killed but it is truth that Methew W. Shepard molested 8 year old boys and got counseling for this when he was 15 years old-Stephen Jimenez incidentally mentioned this near end of book-he interviewed a Casper Wyoming cop and a relative of 1 of victims. But Judy L. Shepard and the Shepard Foundation omits this ugly truth of Methew W. Shepard being a child molester and it would not surprise me if ex Casper Star Tribune journalists Tiffany C. Hunt, Kerry A. Drake and JC Marsden know this but left this out in that I find it hard to believe these 3 Casper Wyoming journalists did not know about Methew W. Shepard molesting 8 year old boys when he was 15 years old because Stephen Jimenez found this in court records and again, Stephen Jimenez incidentally mentioned this near end of book as most of the book was about the 3 people, A.J. McKinney’s problems, Methew W. Shepard’s life and problems and of course the drug problems. Incidentally, it’s possible that Methew W. Shepard had molested more boys other than the 2 case reported to cops. Both JC Marsden & Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt sees nothing wrong with Methew W. Shepard selling drugs and molesting children so their view is rubbish.


Methew W. Shepard associating with drug dealers in both Wyoming and Colorado is not disputable. Methew W. Shepard went into bars where drugs were sold and he did associate with drug dealers-we know that he went to bars named Tornado, Ranger, Library & other bars in Wyoming and Colorado where drugs were sold. Methew W. Shepard’s friend Tina LaBrie expressing concerns about Methew W. Shepard’s drug and $ problems. We know that Methew W. Shepard was having $ problems (spending so much on limosuine rides in Doc O’ Connor’s limousine).


Methew W. Shepard’s a junky (proven fact), drunkard and had money problems. Sheriff O’Malley has said that if Methew W. Shepard sold drugs, the cops would have known which is dishonest-Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. R.J. DeBree know cops don’t always catch all the criminals and that many drug dealers escape detection. Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. Robert J. DeBree have arrested drug dealers and they know how it’s the family and friends who get surprised after they learn some1 they know is a drug dealer.


Sheriff David S. O’Malley and Sgt. Robert J. DeBree know that it’s unlikely MW. Shepard told his friends and family that he was a drug dealer, and even if Methew W. Shepard did tell his friends and family that he sold drugs, don’t think his family will admit this ugly as they had tried to hide the fact that Methew Wayne Shepard molested 8 year old boys and got counseling.


Now was Methew W. Shepard’s assocation with drug dealers and going into bars where drugs were sold more than buying drugs ? Was Methew W. Shepard a drug dealer or a drug courier? Stephen Jimenez thinks so and he believes it was the Denver circle. No, Stephen Jimenez does not know it all but his conclusions are sincere and honest. While homosexual groups complain about Stephen Jimenez saying the murder case is complicated and possibly not a hate crime, that is incidental-main reason homosexual groups are offended by Stephen Jimenez’s book is because he talked about the ugly truths about who M.W. Shepard was. You don’t always know the secrets friends and family have. If a person is a drug dealer, then they are usually not going to tell their friends and family that they do this.


Even if Metthew W. Shepard did tell his friends and family that he sold drugs, don’t think his family will admit this ugly truth about him, as they had tried to hide the fact that Methew Wayne Shepard molested 8 year old boys and got counseling for it. Laramie Project, Shepard Foundation & Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt sees nothing wrong with Methew W. Shepard selling drugs and molesting children so their view is rubbish.

Bhattacharya
Bhattacharya

@fishwithoutbicycle Alyssa Rosenberg was offended by the fact Stephen Jimenez incidentally mentioned near end of book that Methew W. Shepard was arrested when he was 15 for molesting 8 year old boys. The 2 boys who Methew W. Shepard molested is verified by Natrona County Juvenile Court records, the Cody Woming bartender who was victimized by Methew W. Shepard in August 1998 and which is backed by Cody Wyoming police reports and this happened before the October 1998 murder. Judy L. Shepard sees nothing wrong with her son molesting 8 year old boys. Alyssa Rosenberg sees nothing wrong with Methew W. Shepard selling drugs and molesting children. Yes, I think Methew W. Shepard molesting 8 year old boys is a more serious crime than most murders and debate whether getting beaten to death as he did is more or less serious than his crimes of child molestation. Methew W. Shepard being a child molester is proven. That he molested 8 year old boys in his neighborhood and we don’t know the damage that it did to them. Since Methew W. Shepard was killed, no matter why he was murdered, he won’t be able to molest anymore children.


No, I don’t think Methew W. Shepard should have been killed but it is truth that Methew W. Shepard molested 8 year old boys and got counseling for this when he was 15 years old-that is verified information and Stephen Jimenez incidentally mentioned this near end of book-he interviewed a Casper Wyoming cop and a relative of 1 of victims. But Judy L. Shepard and the Shepard Foundation omits this ugly truth of Methew W. Shepard being a child molester and it would not surprise me if ex Casper Star Tribune journalists Tiffany C. Hunt, Kerry A. Drake and JC Marsden know this but left this out in that I find it hard to believe these 3 Casper Wyoming journalists did not know about Methew W. Shepard molesting 8 year old boys when he was 15 years old because Stephen Jimenez found this in court records and again, Stephen Jimenez incidentally mentioned this near end of book as most of the book was about the 3 people, A.J. McKinney’s problems, Methew W. Shepard’s life and problems and of course the drug problems. Incidentally, it’s possible that Methew W. Shepard had molested more boys other than the 2 case reported to cops. Both JC Marsden & Big Island Chronicle Tiffany Camille Hunt sees nothing wrong with Methew W. Shepard selling drugs and molesting children so their view is rubbish.


Yes, Judy L. Shepard does exploit her son for $. Judy L. Shepard sees nothing wrong with her son molesting 8 year old boys and Judy L. Shepard earns anywhere from $5,000 to $20,000 per speech. Judy L. Shepard’s interest is to profit from her son’s 1998 killing. The Shepard Foundation is a propaganda group whose main interest is to push an agenda and to make money. Laramie Project’s interest is to make $. I do not think that Methew W. Shepard should have been murdered as the murder is unrelated to Methew W. Shepard being a child molester, but I care more about the 8 year old boys who Methew W. Shepard molested over him getting murdered.


Methew W. Shepard was having $ problems (spending so much on limosuine rides in Doc O’ Connor’s limousine) that it can easily be that he sold drugs and or was a courier-Methew W. Shepard would not be the first junky to sell drugs. Methew W. Shepard associating with drug dealers in both Wyoming and Colorado is not disputable. A junky like Methew W. Shepard would have to associate with drug dealers to buy his drugs and not with good citizens. Methew W. Shepard definitely knew drug dealers & he worked with them-he could have been a drug dealer, he could have been a courier or he could have done some other work with them to make money.


And the idea that A.J. McKinney and Methew W. Shepard were strangers who did not know eachother until that day is rubbish. With the murder, yes it’s brutal but it’s impossible to know why it happened. People murder eachother for many reasons and they sometimes can be brutal. Was there some other animosity between A.J.McKinney and Methew W. Shepard that we do not know of between the 2 which had been going on for some time? With your critique about the witnesses being junkies, drug dealers-well there is no reason to doubt their credibility. It is dishonest to expect Stephen Jimenez to interview law abiding citizens to learn if Methew W. Shepard sold drugs. Sometimes if you want to learn bad secrets a person has in their life you have to interview people who are criminals. A junky like Methew W. Shepard would have to associate with drug dealers to buy his drugs. Incidentally in M.W. Shepard’s autopsy they found alcohol and traces of chemicals found in drugs such as Meth.


No, I do not trust what Judy L. Shepard, Shepard Foundation and the Laramie Project say about Methew W. Shepard because if they were honest, they would not leave out the fact Methew W. Shepard’s a child molester of 8 year old boys, but they leave this out because they know that a child molester is not going to get sympathy by many people if he is murdered, no matter why the murder happened. Now with M.W. Shepard being a drunkard (possibly alcoholic) and junky who mixed drugs such as Meth with antidepressants, those are his issues. With M.W. Shepard being a drug dealer, no that is not the worst crime. I do not think that Methew W. Shepard should have been murdered as the murder is unrelated to Methew W. Shepard being a child molester, but I care more about the 8 year old boys who Methew W. Shepard molested over him getting murdered.

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