The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals recently provided a small but significant victory for those in the trenches fighting the transgender lunacy.
The St. Louis-based federal appeals court ruled that an Iowa school district could not punish students for “misgendering” other students who were unhappy with their biology.
On October 2, the court ordered a lower court to “grant a preliminary injunction against enforcement of … the policy that prohibits an intentional or persistent refusal ‘to respect a student’s gender identity’.”
The preliminary injunction had been requested by a group called Parents Defending Education, who went to court to fight the Linn Mar Community School District’s attempt in 2022 to suspend or expel students who refused to call other students by their made-up names or pronouns.
The same policy required school staff to keep a transgender student’s “transition” confidential, even from their own parents.
The court did not address the right of parents to direct the care of their own children because the Iowa legislature passed a law, which was signed by the governor and went into effect on July 1, that prohibits school officials from giving “false or misleading information to the parent or guardian of a student regarding the student’s gender identity or intention to transition to a gender that is different from the sex listed on the student’s official birth certificate.”
The new law, the justices noted, made the parental rights part of the lawsuit moot. However, they went ahead and addressed the part of the policy that punished other students for “misgendering,” stating in no uncertain terms that it was an unconstitutional infringement of students’ free speech rights.
“A school district cannot avoid the strictures of the First Amendment simply by defining certain speech as ‘bullying’ or ‘harassment,” the ruling by the three-judge panel stated.
And because the school policy does not adequately define “respect,” the justices continued, “a student thus cannot know whether he is violating the policy when he expresses discomfort about sharing a bathroom with someone who is transgender, argues that biological sex is immutable during a debate in social studies class, or expresses an opinion about the participation of transgender students on single-sex athletic teams.”
All of which are clearly protected speech under the First Amendment. The case was sent back to the lower court, where plaintiffs are likely to prevail on those grounds, they added.
It’s important to point out that this ruling would never have come about if a) the good people of Iowa had not pressed their state representatives to pass a law defending parents’ natural and fundamental right to direct the education and care of their minor children; b) if members of Parents Defending Education had not filed the lawsuit against the school district in the first place; and c) if numerous other organizations had not filed amicus briefs in support.
But this is not the end of the story. The fight has just begun. It must be taken to every state legislature, city council, and school board in America.
The leftists say, “It takes a village to raise a child.” Well, it takes a village to defeat the malevolent forces that are trying to destroy our children. But rulings like this show that American citizens can win when they stand up for what is right and fight back.