Virginia, US: A teacher has filed a lawsuit against his school for placing him on leave for refusing to use ‘transgender’ students’ pronouns.
During a Leesburg Elementary School board meeting, gym teacher Byron ‘Tanner’ Cross said that he refused to give in to the idea that a person could identify as a different sex from the one they were born.
The school board was discussing a policy that would require teachers to call students by their chosen name and pronouns.
It is unclear how many teachers supported Cross’s position, but as a religious man, he made his stance clear and said that this policy would ‘damage’ the students, and would ‘defile the holy image of God’.
Coach Tanner Cross made an impassioned speech at a Loudoun County school board meeting on Tuesday in relation to new policies about gender identity, including forcing staff to refer to students using the pronoun of their choice. Now he’s been put on leave. https://t.co/uQAZ6SEJRE
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) May 29, 2021
In an interview for 60 minutes, he said:
“I am speaking out of love for those who are suffering from gender dysphoria. I’m a teacher but I serve God first, and I will not affirm that a biological boy can be a girl and vice versa because it’s against my religion. It’s lying to a child, it’s abuse to a child, and it’s sinning against our God.”
After the comments were made, the school put him on paid administrative leave on May 27.
Cross has filed a lawsuit against the school on June 2 and alleges that Loudoun County Public Schools administrators violated his right to free speech, as well as his right to act in accordance with his religious beliefs, according to a report.
The defendants are named as the Loudoun school board, Interim Superintendent Scott Ziegler, and Lucia Villa Sebastian, interim assistant superintendent for human resources and talent development.
Part of the lawsuit states the following:
‘Cross used his constitutional right to speak up. The core of constitutional liberty in a free society – the ability to comment on public policy under consideration without fear of retaliation – is at stake in this case.’
As governor, I will stand up for teachers like Tanner Cross. I am calling on the Loudoun County School Board to reinstate Tanner Cross fully because they have absolutely ignored his constitutional rights.
If we don’t stand up for our teachers and parents, who will? pic.twitter.com/mI5qGzfzBH
— Glenn Youngkin (@GlennYoungkin) June 1, 2021
The motion asks for the teacher’s reinstatement, as well as a temporary restraining order against the school board, Ziegler and Sebastian.
The document also mentions that Cross believes God created two genders – male and female – and that his religion “commands him to tell the truth and not tell lies”.
To hear the teacher’s thoughts on the matter please click on the interview below.
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