Ole Miss addresses heckling, gay slurs hurled 'Laramie Project' - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Ole Miss addresses heckling, gay slurs hurled 'Laramie Project' performance

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Student Garrison Gibbons, was one of the actors on stage, the night more than a dozen Ole Miss students, the majority of whom are football players, are accused of heckling and using slurs as student actors performed "The Laramie Project". Student Garrison Gibbons, was one of the actors on stage, the night more than a dozen Ole Miss students, the majority of whom are football players, are accused of heckling and using slurs as student actors performed "The Laramie Project".
OXFORD, MS -

(WMC-TV) – Hundreds of Ole Miss students were required to attend a special session Tuesday night after hecklers hurled gay slurs at the stage during a play last week.

In 2012, Ole Miss made national headlines when students yelled racial slurs after President Obama was re-elected. Now, the campus is facing more controversy after students reportedly yelled gay slurs during a campus theater production last week.

"Four people in the audience overheard them calling me a *** and calling me a ***," said student actor Garrison Gibbons.

More than a dozen Ole Miss students, the majority of whom are football players, are accused of heckling and using slurs as student actors performed "The Laramie Project" last week.

"The Laramie Project" is a production based on a true story of Matthew Sheppard, a gay man who was murdered in Laramie, Wyoming. Student Actor Garrett Gibbons is also gay and could not believe what happened at the production.

"I also realized that people were taking out their camera phones and taking photos of me," he said.

The university decided all of the students at the performance must attend a learning session to find out why the slurs are wrong.

"What we are looking for as a community of support where there are epiphanies. Where they realize one slur doesn't only impact one person. It impacts the whole community whether they were in the audience or whether the weren't," said Professor Jennifer Stollman.

Almost 200 students in the mandatory session heard from professors and people at the university about what happened as they broke up into small groups. The students could ask questions. They also heard from people in the play about how they were affected.

The production was meant to raise awareness and foster discussion. That finally happened Tuesday night in Nutt Auditorium on the campus of Ole Miss.

The university would not allow Action News 5 inside the auditorium or to talk with students about what they learned. A spokesperson reports that Ole Miss still does not know who hurled the slurs.

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