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Mississippi chancellor: Anti-gay jeers at Matthew Shepard play, 'Laramie Project,' a learning opportunity


GREENWOOD, Miss. -- The chancellor of the University of Mississippi says the disruptions at a campus play with gay slurs and inappropriate laughter from the audience is an opportunity to educate students about tolerance.

Chancellor Dan Jones met Monday with the editorial board of the Greenwood Commonwealth. Jones was asked about the play at the meeting.

The disturbances occurred Oct. 1 during a university theater department production of "The Laramie Project," which is about Matthew Shepard, a gay man who was murdered in Wyoming. Ole Miss officials say the dark theater made it hard to identify specific people, and early reports differ about the frequency, volume and source of comments.

Jones said those in the audience were almost exclusively freshmen, who were attending the three-hour play as a course requirement.

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