CV NEWS FEED // The Biden administration argued before a federal appeals court in Chicago Thursday that teachers must use the “preferred pronouns” of schoolchildren.
John Kluge, a teacher at Brownsburg High School in Indiana, was confronted by his school district after he declined to use the preferred pronouns of “LGBT” students, opting instead to simply refer to them by their last names in order to avoid conflict over the issue.
When the district attempted to compel Kluge to use the pronouns, he sought accommodation from his employer based on his own deeply held religious beliefs, which forbade “affirming transgenderism.”
District did not grant Kluge any accommodation, however. Kluge eventually resigned, according to a report from Bloomberg Law:
John Kluge’s practice of just calling students by their last names caused harm to students individually and to Brownsburg Community School Corp. on an institutional level, Justice Department attorney Jason Lee said. The evidence of that was clear in the court below, he said. The harm to two transgender students in Kluge’s music and orchestra class was personal, educational, and social, Lee said. And all students were made to feel uncomfortable by Kluge’s practice.
The Biden administration also pointed out a July ruling by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, which “found the risk that Brownsburg might be sued or lose its federal funding for failing to protect the anti-discrimination rights of transgender students also posed an undue hardship,” Bloomberg Law reported.
A number of legal and political commentators expressed alarm about the administration’s stance in the case.
“Compelled speech. What could go wrong?” tweeted attorney Scott Greenfield.
Reporter Aaron Sibarium of FreeBeacon pointed to the administration’s position as evidence that the LGBTQ movement’s demands about pronouns, once considered only the grievance of a far-Left fringe, are now in the mainstream. “Just a few college kids, and the Department of Justice,” Sibarium wrote.