At around the four minute mark into her valedictory graduation speech at Petaluma High School, Lulabel Seitz’s microphone was cut off just as she had begun to speak about alleged sexual assault on the school’s campus. Seitz alleged she was herself a victim.
School officials don’t deny cutting the microphone feed but defend the decision to do so to protect “student privacy issues.”
Here’s what you need to know about the 17-year-old academically gifted student:
1. Seitz Says She Was Threatened Not to ‘Speak Against’ School Administration Nor Bring up Allegations of Sexual Assault
The above video begins at around the point Seitz’s microphone is cut.
“The Petaluma High School administration infringed on my freedom of speech, and prevented a whole graduating class from having their message delivered,” she said.
Some students shouted “Let her speak” and then there were chants of “Let her speak.” That never happened.
Later, Seitz posted the full speech to YouTube. The following video begins where she makes the original speech she’d intended.
“For weeks, they have threatened me against ‘speaking against them’ in my speech. Sometimes we know what’s right and have to do it despite the threats. Watch the whole uncensored version here as well as the aftermath of them cutting my mic,” she wrote accompanying her internet-posted “uncensored speech.”
Of the 700-plus comments on her YouTube video, with nearly 200,000 views, the vast majority were supportive of Seitz and critical of he school.
“Thank you for speaking up for the truth at your school. Perhaps one day the administration will wake up and understand what you and your classmates have to say.” And one pointed out that having the microphone cut has instead amplified her voice.
Seitz told local and national media that high school administrators pushed her to not mention the alleged assaults and claimed she was “told me to be quiet, told me I can’t talk about it. I realized that this is a big injustice and needs to be spoken about. This is what they’ve been doing. “I thought that maybe for once, they would let a student speak up,” she told ABCNews.
2. Seitz Claims She Was Sexually Assaulted on School Property & Silenced
Valedictorian Lulabel Seitz has her speech censdored by Petluma High School officials
Seitz told local media that she was assaulted by a student on school grounds and alleges administrators “didn’t suspend or expel the student, she said, and instead encouraged her to drop it.”
“They told me not to speak about it,” she said.
This is the portion of the speech the school did not want students and families to hear. It lasts less than 10 seconds.
Prior, she’s speaking about the obstacles students must overcome including wildfires, teacher strikes and under-funding of programs, students nonetheless soldier on with the support of friends and family, and school staff from great teachers to the “lunch ladies” when she takes a breath and says, “And even learning on a campus where some people defend perpetrators of sexual assault and silence their victims, we didn’t …read more