After a four-year legal battle, a college settled a legal case brought by a professor whom it had disciplined for using the "wrong" pronouns when addressing a student.
Philosophy professor Nicolas Meriwether of Shawnee State University got in trouble with the school for calling a transgendered female student "sir." Meriwether said he used words like "sir," "ma'am," and other respectful terms to "foster an atmosphere of seriousness and mutual respect," according to Meriwether in 2018.
The student (who was not named) was offended by the gesture of respect, and complained to the school.
Meriwether said that when the school demanded he use the preferred pronouns it violated his constitutional rights and religious beliefs. His case was taken up by Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) in 2018 and earned a favorable ruling this past week.
"I believe that God created men and women, male and female," Meriwehter told the New York Post. "But also the idea that my speech could be coerced, could be compelled by the administration ... The college classroom is to be a place of debate and discussion and freewheeling ideas. The university has no place in telling professors how they are to think with the students. It was a coercion of my freedom of speech."
Naturally, Shawnee University was unimpressed with the ruling.
"Though we have decided to settle, we adamantly deny that anyone at Shawnee State deprived Dr. Meriwether of his free speech rights or his rights to freely exercise his religion," the university said in a statement. "In this case, Shawnee State followed its policy and federal law that protects students or any individual from bigotry and discrimination. We continue to stand behind a student's right to a discrimination-free learning environment as well as the rights of faculty, visitors, students and employees to freely express their ideas and beliefs."
That last sentence is contradictory, because the school already proved it cannot do both.
Meriwether claims to be a Christian, so naturally he believes that there are only two genders (as do most sane people, but I digress). This student thinks he's a woman, and wanted to be treated as one. When push came to shove on whose worldview it would support, Shawnee chose the transgender ideology.
This unfortunately is the path that sports leagues, universities, even our entire society is taking when it comes to supporting Christians or transgenders, despite the fact that only a miniscule portion of U.S. adults identify in the LGTBQ+ demographic.
Despite what a lot of people think these days, the transgender ideology should not be supported in the slightest. It blurs the lines of reality and makes people like this Shawnee student confused and lost. The most respectful and beneficial thing we can do when faced with this ideology is to tell people the truth about the ideology, like Meriwether did when he called the student sir.