Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

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mr friendly guy
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Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by mr friendly guy » 2019-10-03 01:04am

Sounds like he is a bigot from the description which may not be apparent from the title

https://www.news.com.au/finance/work/at ... 3ead9a551c
Teacher sacked for refusing to use transgender student’s pronouns sues school district
Peter Vlaming was supervising students during an activity last year when he yelled out “don’t let her hit the wall!” The next day, he was suspended.

Peter Vlaming was supervising students during an activity last year when he yelled out, “Don’t let her hit the wall!” The next day, he was suspended.

The French teacher at West Point High School in Virginia had accidentally referred to the transgender student using the female pronoun, rather than their preferred male pronouns “he, him and his”.

It was October 31 and students had been divided into pairs, with one wearing virtual reality goggles and the second giving instructions to prevent them running into objects.

Mr Vlaming noticed the student was about to walk into the wall because their partner wasn’t paying attention, so he called out — immediately realising his mistake. It was the last straw for the student, who withdrew from his class.

“Mr Vlaming, you may have your religion, but you need to respect who I am,” he told the teacher. Mr Vlaming reported the incident to the Principal, who told him, “You know what you do to diffuse a situation like that? You say, ‘I’m sorry, I meant to say him.’”

The school sacked Mr Vlaming in December, citing his repeated refusal to refer to the student using male pronouns. Now he’s suing the school district, saying his religious and free speech rights were violated.

The lawsuit, filed Monday in the King William County Circuit Court, names the West Point School Board, Division Superindendent Laura Abel, West Point High School Principal Jonathan Hochman and Assistant Principal Suzanne Aunspach as defendants.

“Defendants gave Mr Vlaming an ultimatum: use male pronouns for this female student or lose your job,” the complaint says. “Mr Vlaming could not violate his conscience. And it cost him his job.”

Mr Vlaming, it says, “sincerely believes that referring to a female as a male by using an objectively male pronoun is telling a lie”. School authorities tried to compel him to “take sides in an ongoing public debate regarding gender dysphoria and use pronouns that express an objectively untrue ideological message”, it adds.


“Mr Vlaming believes both as a matter of human anatomy and religious conviction that sex is biologically fixed in each person and cannot be changed regardless of a person’s feelings or desires,” it says. “Saying ‘he’, ‘him’ or ‘his’ objectively expresses the message that a person is, or the speaker believes them to be, male.”

The suit claims rather than use male pronouns he instead called the student by his preferred masculine name and avoided using pronouns altogether.

That didn’t satisfy school authorities, who demanded he use male pronouns to refer to the student in all situations, with the Assistant Principal telling him his “personal religious beliefs end at the school door”.

He was warned he would face disciplinary action if he refused to comply. The October incident was the first time he had used the incorrect pronoun in the student’s presence — but it was also the final straw for the school.

“I can’t think of a worse way to treat a child than what was happening,” Mr Hochman said at a school board meeting, according to the Associated Press.

The school board unanimously voted to sack Mr Vlaming at a packed five-hour meeting in December. The next day, around 100 students staged a walkout for the popular teacher holding signs reading, “Men are men and women are women” and “You can’t impose delusion onto us”, NBC News reported.

“Peter went out of his way to accommodate this student as he does all his students. His school fired him because he wouldn’t contradict his core beliefs,” Alliance Defending Freedom lawyer Caleb Dalton said in a statement.

“The school board didn’t care how well Peter treated this student. It was on a crusade to compel conformity. He works hard to make his students feel welcomed. In his French class, he always calls his students by the name they choose. He even used the student’s preferred masculine name and was willing to avoid using pronouns in the student’s presence. He just didn’t want to be forced to use a pronoun that offends his conscience. That’s entirely reasonable, and it’s his constitutionally protected right. Tolerance, after all, is a two-way street.”

In a statement, Mr Vlaming said he was “saddened that West Point Public Schools wouldn’t work with me to reach a happy situation for everyone on this matter so that we could all continue on with learning in mutual respect”.

A spokesperson for West Point Schools told The Washington Post it denied any wrongdoing and would “vigorously defend” the claim.

“West Point Public Schools’ primary focus is on students, staff, and instruction and we will continue to direct our energy toward maintaining a high-quality learning environment in our schools,” the spokesperson said.
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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by Broomstick » 2019-10-03 03:52am

You know, it seems from this article this wasn't a one-time accident but the final straw in a series of misgendering actions.

I get really irritated at the sort of person who believes their faith/system should trump everyone else's. The attitude that you're free until it inconveniences me, then you have to conform to my rules. Um... no, that's not tolerance.
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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by mr friendly guy » 2019-10-03 04:10am

Can a student call the teacher a bigoted piece of shit to his face using the same logic he uses? Otherwise that would be lie, and if the student has a similar religious belief which mandates they tell the truth, why totally ok. Religious freedom and all that right?
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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by Lost Soal » 2019-10-03 05:20am

It was on a crusade to compel conformity.
Really. That's interesting as schools have traditionally done many things to compel conformity such as:
School uniforms
Designated eating & break times
Compulsory gatherings such as general assemblies
School Rules & Codes of Conduct in general
& of course the hot button issue, You WILL STAND for the playing of our anthem at every single event.
Strangely enough none of these things which students are required to conform to raise these kinds of lawsuits and grand standing (OK so the anthem bit is and outlier in this case).
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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by Broomstick » 2019-10-03 05:56am

Civilization is a constant balancing act between freedom and conformity.

A certain restraint is required to have a civilization, that's why we have laws against hitting other people or taking their stuff as just a couple of examples.

So ... what's the cost vs. benefit of various rules? School uniforms can even out social issues between the wealthy and the poor, avoid kids showing gang allegiance. Is that a net positive or negative? Depends on the school district, which is why some districts have uniforms and some don't.

Designated break times and eating areas? Well, if you're going to teach people in groups there has to be a certain conformity in starting/stopping, and keeping food in one location that can be easily cleaned between uses gets into health and safety issues.

General assemblies? Great for announcements that need to go out to everyone. Can easily be overdone or overfrequent.

Compulsory attendance at prayer? That went through the courts long ago - public schools aren't allowed to do that (although obviously some places break that rule) but private, religious-based schools can because they're private entities and no one is forced to send their kids there (you can always go to a public school).

School rules and code of conduct: like all rules/regulations/laws they can be overdone, but some rules are needed to keep minimum order and safety regs are for... well... safety.

So... what is the risk/benefit in calling a child by their preferred pronoun? I guess a lot of it depends on whether the adult feels children have any actual rights or not - some people really don't think kids do have rights. I'll think on it. I'm inclined to come down on the side of "use the child's preferred gender" but I'd like to have some logical talking points instead of just going with a gut feeling.
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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by Zaune » 2019-10-03 09:56am

Broomstick wrote:
2019-10-03 03:52am
You know, it seems from this article this wasn't a one-time accident but the final straw in a series of misgendering actions.
Indeed. If it had been an isolated incident then I doubt the student would have been so blunt about it, much less Vlaming's boss. Using the wrong name or pronoun out of habit a couple of times at first happens to everyone, and the overwhelming majority of trans people will shrug it off; everyone makes that mistake occasionally, even if they're trans themselves. But if it persists long-term, even when someone's been politely corrected a couple of times before, that's deliberate rudeness.
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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by Lord Revan » 2019-10-03 10:18am

Zaune wrote:
2019-10-03 09:56am
Broomstick wrote:
2019-10-03 03:52am
You know, it seems from this article this wasn't a one-time accident but the final straw in a series of misgendering actions.
Indeed. If it had been an isolated incident then I doubt the student would have been so blunt about it, much less Vlaming's boss. Using the wrong name or pronoun out of habit a couple of times at first happens to everyone, and the overwhelming majority of trans people will shrug it off; everyone makes that mistake occasionally, even if they're trans themselves. But if it persists long-term, even when someone's been politely corrected a couple of times before, that's deliberate rudeness.
Yeah this seems like a clear case of intentional, deliberate and repeated offenses in part of the teacher. In fact I'd say it was deliberate attempt at devaluing the transgender person as a person, by ignoring the his personal desires and instead implying the person has only value as a pre-set label.
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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by Darth Yan » 2019-10-09 03:24am

I'm sorry but people used "muh ruligun" to justify hating interracial marriage but nowadays if people tried that they'd rightfully be called a disgusting dogfucker. Same here. Mr Vlamings is using the same excuse white supremacists used, and he was warned multiple times. Quite frankly he DESERVES to get fired.

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Re: Teacher sacked for repeatedly using the wrong pronoun

Post by Solauren » 2019-10-09 01:46pm

Generally, I tend to stay out of discussions concerning Transgenderism and Sexual identity issues (mainly because there hasn't been nearly enough medical investigation into the issue for me to form solid fact based opinions when it comes to some of the finer questions and details that tend to be sensitive subjects. I've found asking the wrong thing, even out of genuine medical curiosity or concern, can get some very emotional reactions).

However, in this case, I'm confident enough to say: FUCK THIS ASSHOLE. I hope he loses, and he has to pay for all legal expenses occurred by all parties.

'My Religion' and 'Free Speech' is, more often then not, just a shield to justify "I'm an asshole." That's clearly the case here.
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