I'm a member of the Gainesville High School Class of '99. I've been following the news about Cody Stephens and his mother's fight for him to be named sole valedictorian.
I mention that it is his mother's fight because he doesn't seem to care either way. He is humble in the fact that he has great grades and a full scholarship after he graduates to attend Emory.
The fact that bothers me the most is Mrs. Stephens should be happy her son is well-educated and has opportunities available to him that just a century ago were unheard of. He earned the top spot, congratulations, but his mother wants her 15 minutes and then some.
Don't overshadow a massive accomplishment by your son so you can get your name and picture in the paper. When all is said and done this won't be about the accomplishments of a youth but the bullheaded tenacity of a lady who doesn't realize at this point in time she is hurting more than helping.
Let it go and be happy that your son works hard and is going to college. That he chose education over drugs and gang violence. That he is part of a number that is slowly rising of African-American men in college instead of prison, which is roughly about 919,000 in college compared to around 827,000 in prison.
Cody will go on to do great things and in 50 years he will be remembered for his accomplishments and you will be forgotten. So enjoy your time in the limelight because it's all you're going to get. I just hope your son doesn't resent you for continuing to make a scene well after a resolution has been put forth.
I'm sure Cody just wants to get back studying and better himself while you stand on your soapbox and complain about people who were doing their jobs as laid out before them, nothing more nothing less.
Last but not least, congrats to Charlie Bryant for his hard work as well.