A staff member at a Catholic college--or, to be more precise, a college in the Jesuit tradition, which isn't necessarily the same thing as a Catholic college--has been suspended (with pay, for the moment) while her terrible speech-hate-crime is investigated.
What did she do? She had the gall to stop and talk to some students advertising LGBTA@%!$!% week and to tell them (I know this will shock you) that the Catholic church teaches that there are only two genders. She also (this is even more shocking) referred to one of the students as a man even though he told her he "identifies" as non-gendered.
An alumnus of Loyola Marymount University (in LA) listened to the conversation on a cell phone and agreed with the staffer's account, stating that she was friendly and kind in her dialogue with the students.
Although the accounts differ on some details, what is most frightening about this is the extent to which they agree. That is to say, the students are asserting quite openly that, for the woman staff member merely to say that there are only two genders and to call one of the students a man was "denying the existence" of the "transgender" students and therefore is grounds for dismissal, at least. They also called the LAPD, who I hope will tell them to take a hike and stop wasting the taxpayers' money. (LAPD may have to investigate because some of the sexually themed signs for pansexuality week or whatever it is called were moved behind a garbage can. I gather the staff member isn't being accused of this, but no doubt moving the signs can be ginned up into some kind of crime, the perpetrator of which must be found and punished severely. Which reminds me of all the times over the years that whole print runs of conservative alternative student newspapers have been stolen and burned wholesale on college campuses and nothing has been done, but I digress.)
Loyola Marymount's Bias Incident Response Team swung immediately into action on the terrible behavior of this staff member. The very thought that LMU or anyplace else has a Bias Incident Response Team with its own shiny acronym (BIRT) and is obviously very proud of having one should make one wonder whether to laugh, cry, or be sick. Her ultimate job fate remains unknown, presumably even to her and to her husband.
Now, the question that comes to my mind is this: What would you do if you were in the staffer's shoes?
To begin with, should we all just tell each other now to keep our heads down and our mouths shut and hope to fly under the radar? Clearly, we have passed the point where it can be regarded as safe to speak out and have a respectful discussion of these issues while disagreeing with the leftist establishment. Had she known what would happen, would she still have spoken? Should she have?
I tend to think that we need two groups. One can be the "keep your head down" group, secretly teaching their children and grandchildren subversive ideas such as that there are only two genders. The other group can continue to play the canaries in the mine. With a lawyer on hand preferably and a game plan before speaking out.
Despite the fact that I'm often accused of doing nothing but talking about all the terrible, bad things happening in the world, I actually want to use my posts for practical ends. That's why, when it comes to end-of-life issues, I'm often ending my posts with injunctions not to volunteer to be an organ donor, or to be sure not to sign anything agreeing to forego "extraordinary means." In this case, I'm a bit at a loss for practical advice.
Certainly everybody should know what they are getting into. This is especially true if you are an employee and if your employer is promoting transgenderism, homosexuality, etc. If you express a contrary view and the employer does not punish you, the employer can say that he could be liable for creating a "hostile environment" for members of the specially protected group. This has always been one of the worst aspects of non-discrimination law. It has always impinged upon the speech of all employees because of the regulations surrounding "hostile environment." So don't walk into the punch unprepared if you do decide to speak up.
Also: How many Catholic parents are spending many thousands of dollars or encouraging their children to take on crushing debt to attend Loyola Marymount? I bet a lot. And why? Is it even in part because it's allegedly a Catholic school? Because if so, that's a foolish reason. Whether or not anybody should be taking on crushing debt to go to college is a legitimate question, but certainly don't take it on under a false impression. Don't do it because of the alleged religious identity of a school that, in fact, has nothing but bitter enmity towards basic tenets of that religious identity.
That's all I got in the way of practical advice. May the Lord help and sustain Mrs. ____, the anonymous staffer who is getting crushed by the jackboots this time around. Hopefully she will be able to find some legal options for self-defense.