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Aethelwine's avatar

Should I contact a lawyer or the ACLU?

Asked by Aethelwine (42958points) July 10th, 2017

I had a discussion with a local man on Facebook who happens to be my son’s former softball coach, Mayor of a local tiny town and school board member of the school district my child attends.

This was his Facebook post: http://imgur.com/a/RhOz9

After many bible verses that were posted I posted this: http://imgur.com/a/GzKey

His response: http://imgur.com/a/13xPv

He also said this but I do not have a screenshot: “We should all accept each other as human beings and not “beat each other up”, either verbally or physically. There has been some very good conversation above regarding this topic. The bottom line with me is this, I agree this may not seem as if it is a choice for some people. As one commenter mentioned I believe this to be part of a spiritual war that is raging within the individual a war that as someone mentioned no pull can cure. I believe there to be a cure and only one cure and that is Jesus Christ. The is plenty of evidence in God’s holy word from people who witnessed healings, mental and physical. If anyone commenting or reading wishes to learn more I would be more than happy to discuss with you in more detail. If you don’t wish to learn then we will just have to disagree peacefully and lovingly.”

This man is a school board member and he is posting this online.
Some history about this man: http://www.mcdonoughvoice.com/news/20170421/b-pc-boe-ponders-next-move-after-union-complaint-against-oakman

I stood up for this man when these past allegations were printed in the local paper. He had me fooled. I want to protect my child and not make it worse for him while we still live in this shithole but my gut tells me I need to stand up for others. My son has a friend who is local and asked their mother what they thought about transgenders. This child has told my son he is also transgender. The mother said “no daughter of mine will ever be a son!”

How can I stay silent when there is a child hurting in my community? My child gets to move but this poor young teen is stuck here. The suicide rate for transgenders is 41% if they are not accepted. What do I do?

This question is not about what I should not have said on the internet. It is public knowledge that my child is transgender. I have a GoFundMe to help us move. Please do not badger me for sharing public information.

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17 Answers

Aethelwine's avatar

Sorry. Had to fix the order of the links.

funkdaddy's avatar

Intended with support and guidance from one opinion: I don’t think a lawyer would have much to work with here if you’re looking to pursue any sort of case against him individually for those statements. There isn’t a law against his beliefs and he expressed them fairly respectfully. He has a protected right to disagree as an individual.

If you’re hoping to get him off the school board, it sounds like the union and the other board members may be better place to start than a lawyer. You could add your concerns to those of others and it sounds like that may be more likely to create some change.

the three links seem to show the same screenshots, so I’m not sure if maybe we’re missing another part of the conversation?

filmfann's avatar

You can’t sue someone for being an asshole. I don’t see anything actionable.

Aethelwine's avatar

Sorry about the screenshots. I kept fixing it but I guess it didn’t work. Which one does it show? :(

Aethelwine's avatar

I don’t want to sue but considering his past I don’t think he should represent the community. He would make life difficult for my child and others like him concerning restrooms and locker rooms. This is why my child had anxiety attacks the past year.

Aethelwine's avatar

@filmfann He has the ability to vote against my child’s right to pee and change clothes where he feels comfortable and he will do so.

Zaku's avatar

Unless you have a specific legal question, I’d probably go with contacting the ACLU or other support groups.

tinyfaery's avatar

Just turn away, ignore it, and know you are leaving. You’ll have to deal with new problems when you move.

Also, tell him he is a self-righteous prick.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I think you should calm down. From the material you’ve provided in the links this man sounds kind and considerate, while you are hostile and “itchin for a fight”. It’s pointless seeking the aid of the ACLU if there is no evidence of some infringement of your son’s civil rights.

flutherother's avatar

These two are not the only options. I would suggest you try to get through the next 24 hour period without mentioning the word ‘transgender’ or even thinking about the subject.

longgone's avatar

While a truly non-judging school environment would be lovely, I don’t think you can make it happen in time for your son’s friend. From what you’ve said, it sounds like the community is not anywhere close to educated about this subject.

I would recommend finding the people who are sympathetic. Change is in numbers, so rather than trying to influence those who have opposite beliefs it might make sense to find a few friendly and smart people to make your allies first.

While that’s happening, something else needs to be done to help your kid’s friend. He needs someone on his side more than anything. Is there a possibility of your son staying in contact with this other teen after the move? Are there any kind-hearted relatives/counselors/teachers? Living in a conservative community when you don’t fit into any of the comfortable boxes people create is hard, but it can be made a little easier knowing that you’re accepted by those who matter.

canidmajor's avatar

The ACLU is doing a bang-up job with the Gavin Grimm case, it will hopefully be something that sets good precedents.

At this point, because you are planning on moving anyway, and you have mentioned a few times that Ethan is severely emotionally distraught, I would recommend backing off from any action, in order to protect him.

This issue is not being unaddressed.

This is a cause worth fighting for, but right now you can’t anticipate what affect the (very likely) national exposure would have on his state of mind. Get him settled and stable in a new, supportive, safer environment first.

I laud Gavin Grimm, but I fear for his life.

chyna's avatar

@jonsblond I think until your family gets situated in a new home, Ethan is at ease in his new environment I would leave it alone. For now. I don’t mean for your family to abandon this child, but I think you’re too new to the transgender world to be of utmost help yet.
Also, a lawyer would be an expense you don’t need right now.

NomoreY_A's avatar

Just move away from those morons asap, and meantime try to keep a cool head. And here’s something you can post on Facebook, tell this jerk off to blow the dust off his Bible and try reading it: “Judge not, lest ye be judged”. I almost wish I could believe that stuff myself, because if there really was a Judgment Day, a whole lot of self righteous assholes are going to get one hell of a shock.

Aethelwine's avatar

Update:

I have the attention of Lambda Legal and we are working together to make this school safe for children like my son. We will be homeschooling until we move and many members of the school board want this man gone. While the majority of the community thinks my child is a spawn of Satan I do have the other members of the school board on my side. We all want this man gone.

First and foremost school boards look out for students. This man is not looking out for my child and others like him. I can’t stay silent.

Thanks to everyone for responding. i do appreciate your opinions and support.

Aethelwine's avatar

I feel I do not have the support that I need from the Fluther community. They want me to shut up about transgender issues. Just look at @flutherother‘s response. I only returned to respond to this question for those who answered.

I would hope some of you would fight for the safety of your child like I am doing. Staying silent only lets the bigots win.

Peace and love. (stolen from Mr. Grimm)

I’m out.

Aethelwine's avatar

Hostile and looking for a fight @stanleybmanly? When it comes to the safety of your child the parent is not in the wrong. This school board member is using his religion to condemn my child, however lovingly he presents himself. This is wrong.

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