CA teacher fired after marrying his partner


steam out of ears

I tried and tried to add the video to this post, but it was one of those auto-plays that I couldn't de-auto. Please watch it, it's short and paints a clearer, even more infuriating picture. Here it is at the Los Angeles Times, along with the story.

And what a story it is. I currently have steam shooting out of both ears, and here's why:

Ken Bencomo, a gay teacher at an all-girl Catholic high school in the Los Angeles area got fired because he dared to legally marry his partner and school officials happened to see photos of the wedding in a local newspaper.

So they booted him. They already knew he was gay, he never hid that fact. So now he no longer works at St. Lucy’s Priory High School as of a few days after he married his partner of 10 years.

He and his partner, Christopher Persky, 32, were among the first couples married at the San Bernardino County Assessor-Recorder’s Office following a U.S. Supreme Court decision that allowed gay couples to marry in California.

Photos of the ceremony were published in the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.

School officials had been aware of his sexual orientation for about 10 of the 17 years Bencomo has been employed by the high school, said Patrick McGarrigle, Bencomo’s attorney.

School officials specifically mentioned the wedding and the publicity it received during a meeting at which Bencomo was informed that he had been fired, McGarrigle said.

Is steam coming out of your ears yet?

It didn't seem to matter that Bencomo had previously introduced his partner to administrators at school events and that they clearly knew about his relationship. It. Was. No. Secret.

The school released a statement:

“[We are] a community of faith for those who wish to express, practice and adhere to values in education based on the Roman Catholic tradition.”

While the school does not discriminate against teachers or other school employees based on their private lifestyle choices, public displays of behavior that are directly contrary to church teachings are inconsistent with these values. These values are incorporated into the contractual obligations of each of our instructors and other employees.”

So it's okay to be gay, just don't express your feelings for your loved one or commit to him/her in public:

John Oliver:


So you can have gay desires, you just can't take gay action. Which I guess means you can listen to "YMCA," but you may not under any circumstances do the hand gestures.

Gay men can have sex, as long as it's with lesbian women, within the confines of a loveless marriage. Just as God nearly intended.

Dear School Officials:

Being gay is not a "lifestyle choice," and getting married is not a "public display of behavior that is directly contrary to church teachings that are inconsistent with these values." Getting married is one of those family values you're so fond of espousing (no pun). But, darn! You happened to spot a photo of a ceremony in which two men made their devotion to each other legal, and that made you feel all queasy and icky inside, so you fired a well-qualified, popular teacher.

It's 2013 and marriage equality is here to stay, so try living in the present instead of your very intolerant, unaccepting past. Consensual love is a good thing, remember?

"Nothing can bring a real sense of security into the home except true love." Author: Billy Graham

Love, Laffy

You can sign a petition to reinstate Bencomo. It already had about 10,000 signatures as of a few days ago. Think of it as a wedding present.

gay couple teacher fired CA

  • E.A. Blair

    A gay man teaching at an all-girls' school should be one person you could absolutely count on to not sexually harass the students...I guess the shriveled-up old nuns who run St. Lucy's would rather have a good old hetero man surrounded by nubile temptation.

  • mikemixer

    One would think the Catholic church in LA would be quite tired of drawing attention to itself.

  • Bose

    It's OK to be gay, the school says, as long as you get our permission first for how gay you can be.

    It's OK to be gay, the school says, and especially to offer your unequivocal support for our faith-based curricula in your professional work with us, just don't take on any purely civil responsibilities and rights which we find "icky."

    It might be OK to provide a safe haven for a kid in foster care who has no other options, but you'd better toss the child back out before you get too attached and want her to have two legally-committed "forever" parents.

    Yeah, it's OK for you to be a gift in the lives of the children you serve professionally, but how dare you see yourself as a peer, and equal, to their parents.

  • juicyfruityyy

    He worked there for 17 years. He introduced his partner. But he would have to marry in private and not tell anyone. Sounds like a law-suit.