VA Teacher Fired for Not Using Male Pronouns Toward Transgender Student
A French language teacher who was fired after not using male pronouns with which a transgender student identified said on Monday that he did everything he could to accommodate the student's new identity.
Peter Vlaming lost his job at West Point High School in Virginia after a unanimous school board vote. He reportedly cited his Christian beliefs as to why he would not refer to the student using male pronouns.
"I love and respect all of my students, including the student in question," Vlaming said on Tucker Carlson Tonight.
He said that using male pronouns was "a bridge too far" and instead addressed the student by his new male name.
According to The Richmond Times-Dispatch, the student in question felt "uncomfortable" and was backed by school officials.
Vlaming said that he did not once do anything to belittle the student.
"It's not my place as a public school teacher to give my view on the subject," he said. "I'm a French teacher. I teach French."
Vlaming's attorney, Shawn Voyles, added that he just wants tolerance to be "a two-way street."
"All [Vlaming has] asked for, all he still asks for, is that respect be extended to him and to his rights," Voyles said. "This is a case of compelled speech, really."
Vlaming added that he was also told to use male pronouns when referring to the student when other students weren't present.
"I couldn't agree to that kind of ultimatum," he said.