With the “woke” generation, many need to be aware of how people identify themselves. The LGBTQ community need to be acknowledged and respected. Simply put, some may have been born one way but identify more as another.
There’s been an ongoing debate between the new generation and the people who abide by tradition. They staunchly defend their side and refuse to see things another way, but at this point, it’s all about recognizing how people see themselves.
A Virginia teacher is one example of a man with conventional beliefs. He has recently been placed on leave because of his strong refusal to refer to transgender and gender non-conforming students by their preferred personal pronouns. He abides by this because of his professed Christian belief system. This news had been recently reported and has garnered a variety of reactions from the readers.
Byron “Tanner” Cross is the school’s gym teacher who recently spoke out against the use of preferred personal pronouns. He stated his beliefs during a “Rights of Transgender and Gender-Expansive Students” meeting organized by Loudon County Public Schools.
Cross, a Leesberg Elementary School teacher spoke in a video meeting saying, “My name is Tanner Cross and I am speaking out of love for those who are suffering from gender dysphoria.” He continued on to defend his actions, pointing out to a television program that had aired recently. The said program covered the topics on teens who were in the process of “de-transitioning” after they believed that they had actually rushed their decisions to make changes.
Cross, sticking by his decision, continued, “I love all of my students, but I will never lie to them regardless of the consequences. 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.”
Loudon County Public Schools expressed their concern about the recent issue and spoke to the Loudon Times-Mirror about their stance. They sated that that they had placed Cross on paid leave, with parents notified of the decision on Thursday. Leesburg Elementary principal, Shawn Lacy, wrote, “Because this involves a personnel matter, I can offer no further information.”
Loudoun County School Board just put a school teacher on administrative leave for stating he would not teach LGBTQ because it violates his Christian principles. pic.twitter.com/QCwzIYdNNw
— Michael S. Miller (@imichaelsmiller) May 27, 2021
The school district had actually drafted a policy on trans and gender-expansive students’ rights. In it are notes stating, that “LCPS staff shall allow gender-expansive or transgender students to use their chosen name and gender pronouns that reflect their gender identity without any substantiating evidence.” However, not everyone is amenable to the policy. On Friday, the gym teacher’s wife, Angela Cross, shared her thoughts on Facebook and said that he was placed on leave for “speaking out.” She says, “As Americans, we believe that every American has the right to their beliefs, but NO AMERICAN HAS THE RIGHT TO IMPOSE THEIR BELIEFS ON OTHERS.” She continued to defend her husband and said, “We spoke out first and foremost to protect the children and also to defend the first amendment rights of teachers and staff.”
“In answer to the many question of what you can do to help, first please stand with us in truth and with love on God’s word,” Angela Cross also said.
In recent years, public schools and organizations have become more and more sensitive to people’s preferred pronouns. To abide by this means to show proper respect. This also creates an inclusive environment. It makes them feel accepted as opposed to making use of pronouns that are not how people want to be known.
The stance also included inquiring about the preferred pronouns and making sure that each takes measures to not misidentify them. Not acknowledging what they want will make them feel dismissed, alienated, disrespected or hurt.
In light of the recent events, other schools have to also be made aware of the individual needs of their students. It is in school that children grow into their skin and know who they are and who they want to be for the rest of their lives.
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