Anti-LGBT pastor and American Family Association spokesperson Bryan Fischer lashed out at 16-year-old Cassidy Cambell on Monday, the trans girl who won her high school’s homecoming queen title. Fischer proclaimed that the teenager is mentally ill and volubly protested that news networks and media outlets covering her election are calling Cassidy “she” and “her” rather than her birth gender.
“He has a mental illness,” said Fischer on his daily radio show. “He thinks he’s a girl and they elected him homecoming queen and the school officials allowed this charade to go on. That violates everything we know about gender, about sex, about genetics, about biology, about human health, about what mental health is, it violates every known standard of decency and normality in America.”
Fischer’s has been but one of many angry, bullying messages that Campbell, a junior at Marina High School in Huntington Beach, CA, has received. She has been attacked online on Twitter and multiple other forums since Friday night.
“Fischer isn’t convincing anyone with his shameful comments,” Villano said. His remarks are “out of line” and show that he has “no understanding of who trans people are,” he continued.
The right-wing commentator is also mis-reading the public conversation about Cassidy Campbell and transgender issues in general. “For every one comment like Fischer’s,” said Villano, there are “thousands of others” supporting her.
Campbell posted a tearful video entitled “I should be so happy…” on Friday night in the wake of her win. In it, the newly crowned homecoming queen came face-to-face with insults and angry tweets from transphobic bigots.
“I can’t even enjoy it. I can’t even be happy,” she said of winning the Homecoming crown, “because everybody is so upset over it, and so ignorant and so stupid.”
NCTE has established a page called “Stand With Transgender Homecoming Queen Cassidy Lynn Campbell” for supporters.
Villano said that the messages coming through the page are overwhelmingly supportive, with people telling Cassidy to “keep her head up” in the face of the bullying and to be “proud of her victory.”
“People have been sharing really powerful things about their own experiences,” he said. “I think Cassidy’s experience really resonates with people. She’s been able to earn a kind of respect from her community that lots of other transgender people haven’t really had before.”
Watch Cassidy Campbell’s video “I should be so happy…,” embedded below via YouTube:
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
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