The college finally settled the legal dispute after four years of legal struggle.
Shawnee State University philosophy professor Nicolas Meriwether was criticized for calling a transgender student “sir” by the school. Meriwether claimed that he used terms like “sir”, “ma’am,” or other respectable terms in order to foster a “climate of seriousness, mutual respect”, according to Meriwether.
The gesture of respect was offensive to the student, who was not identified and complained about it to the school.
Meriwether said that when the school demanded he use the preferred pronouns it violated his constitutional rights and religious beliefs. Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), which took up his case in 2018, made a favorable decision this week.
“I believe that God created men and women, male and female,” Meriwehter told the New York Post. The administration could also compel me to give my speech. College classrooms are meant to encourage discussion, debate, and open-minded ideas. It is not appropriate for the university to dictate how professors should think about students. This was coercion against my freedom to speak.”
Shawnee University didn’t seem to be impressed 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. Shawnee State observed its federal policy that protects individuals from discrimination and students in this instance. As a university, we stand by students’ right to a non-discriminatory learning environment. We also support the freedom of employees, visitors, and faculty to share their opinions and views.
This last sentence contradicts itself because it is obvious that the school cannot accomplish both.
Meriwether says he is a Christian. Therefore, he thinks there only are two genders. (As most rational people believe, but I digress). A student claims he is a female and wants to be treated the same. Shawnee opted for the transgender worldview when it was time to choose.
Related: ‘Utter Rubbish’: Trans Woman Golfer Against Relaxing Sports Gender Rules
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.
Contrary to what many people believe, transgender ideologies should not be encouraged. This ideology blurs reality, and leaves people such as this Shawnee student lost and confused. When confronted with such ideology, the most helpful and respectful thing that we can do is tell them the truth. Meriwether did this when he called the student sir.