The majority of children in America get up in the morning about half of the days in a year and head for a public school building, where they’ll spend a significant portion of their waking hours. They’ll take at least one, if not two, meals there, and at some point, they’ll probably visit a bathroom. For transgender kids, this can be a little more complicated.
Over recent years, though, there’s been a shift towards officially recognizing in law that preventing a transgender child from accessing the appropriate restroom facilities for their gender is discrimination. Though some of the advances made under President Barack Obama were reversed when Betsy DeVos was Secretary of Education, under Biden they’ve been reinforced. The Supreme Court even recently affirmed a lower court’s ruling in favor of a trans teen, as the ACLU reports here.
Not everyone is happy about less discrimination in this nation, though, and two teachers in Oregon, in particular, decided to take it upon themselves to seek help to undo this. They sent an email to right-wing public figure and news commentator Ben Shapiro, asking for his help, as well as posting videos in which they express their opposition to laws that would require treating trans kids with the minimal respect of using their correct pronouns and chosen names, and allowing them to use the correct bathrooms.
However, even a Fox News article about the pair affirms that it wasn’t these views and the fight for the right to discriminate that resulted in the teachers being fired. Instead, it was the fact that their email to Ben Shapiro proved they were using school resources to work on their political campaign.
Despite this, Shapiro shared the article and complained about the (in his view) unfairness, claiming that the teachers would not have been fired if the email had instead been in support of equal rights for trans students.
Who thinks these teachers would have been fired if they had sent an email to Rachel Maddow asking for support for biological boys using the girls bathroom? https://t.co/LFrAy2IieX
— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) July 22, 2021
The teachers’ attorney, provided through a religious freedom organization, argues that their fight to oppose equal rights legislation is not political, and that “most of what they did in this case” was neither on-campus nor using school facilities or resources.
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Steph Bazzle reports on social issues and religion for Hill Reporter. She focuses on stories that speak to everyone's right to practice what they believe in and receive the support of their communities and government officials. You can reach her at Steph@HillReporter.com