Fired for Refusing to Use a Student’s ‘Preferred Pronoun:’ Why Every American Should Be Concerned

WEST POINT, Virginia – Peter Vlaming was a well-liked French teacher at West Point High School in Virginia. But late last year, Vlaming was fired because he refused to call a ninth-grade student who transitioned from female to male by the student’s new preferred pronoun, “he.”

“I could not, in good conscience based on my Christian faith, call a girl a boy,” Vlaming said.

Vlaming agreed to use the student’s new name. But since he wouldn’t refer to the biological girl as “he” or “him,” he was placed on administrative leave in October of 2018.

School Board’s Ultimatum

“I was told that not only would I pronounce masculine pronouns when referring to the student when students were present, [but] that I would do so even when students weren’t present. I was given a written ultimatum that insisted that I  use masculine pronouns for the student and that I would be fired if they deemed that I was avoiding the use of masculine pronouns,” Vlaming said.

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