The student is not a male but a female. To illustrate how bizarre things have become, the news story, after acknowledging that the student is biologically female refers to her as a “boy.” Of course, this is not journalism, it is sheer propaganda. To further illustrate how absurd things have become, even the prosecuting principal slipped up at one point.
James Anderson is among many calling attention to the case of a teacher who has been fired by the West Point, Virginia school board for refusing to submit to their demand that he refer to students who belong biologically to one sex with pronouns of a different (grammatical) gender. According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, “Peter Vlaming, a French teacher at West Point High School…resisted administrators’ orders to use male pronouns to refer to a ninth-grade student who had undergone a gender transition.” Vlaming tried to compromise by using the student’s preferred name. That was compromise unsatisfactory to the administration, who demanded that Vlaming submit or face termination. The administrators accused Vlaming of discrimination against the student but the news story observes, “[t]he nondiscrimination policies were updated a year ago to include protections for gender identity, but Vlaming’s lawyer, Shawn Voyles, said there was no specific guidance on the use of gender pronouns.” The administrators and the board demanded that Vlaming tolerate the student’s chosen pronoun by using it but they were unwilling to tolerate or accommodate his conscience, that it is wrong to refer to a biological male with the pronouns of another sex. As Vlaming notes, there are first-amendment questions in play. No one is accusing Vlaming of treating the biologically female student rudely or without compassion. He did not refer to her using the feminine pronoun in her presence but that was not enough for administrators, who demanded conformity to a non-existent policy. Because he would not submit to their demands the board terminated his employment.
This, is, of course, a bizarre case. Rather than accommodate the teacher, who adheres to objective, biological and grammatical realities, school administrators the board are punishing him for refusing to say what he and they know to be false. The student is not a male but a female. To illustrate how bizarre things have become, the news story, after acknowledging that the student is biologically female refers to her as a “boy.” Of course, this is not journalism, it is sheer propaganda. To further illustrate how absurd things have become, even the prosecuting principal slipped up at one point:
…Vlaming and his lawyer pointed out that [the principal] Hochman used the wrong pronoun for the student during his testimony.
As Hochman described his conversation with Vlaming after the incident on Halloween [in which Vlaming referred to the student, to others, as her to prevent her from running into a wall], Hochman said he told Vlaming: “You need to say sorry for that. And refer to her by the male pronoun.” (editorial comment and italics added—rsc)