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'Nonbinary, transfeminine' prof threatens to kick students out of class for 'intentional misgendering' — but college is having none of it

'Intentional misgendering, as with any attempt to slur another student's personal integrity on the basis of race, ethnicity, or religion, will result in immediate dismissal from class for that session'

Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

A Brooklyn College professor threatened to kick students out of class for "intentional misgendering" other students — but once the administration found out, the school was having none of it, Campus Reform reported.

What are the details?

Campus Reform said it obtained the complete original syllabus of the course taught by Brandon Aultman, which includes a warning regarding "intentional misgendering." The outlet said the syllabus reads, in part:

Pronouns, Gender Identity, and Racial Insensitivity: My name is B. Call me B. I am nonbinary, transfeminine. For my information concerning the use of these terms please consult http://transstudent.org. I use gender-neutral pronouns (they/them). I adhere to a strict policy of respect for the gender, sexual, and racial identities of my students. Intentional misgendering, as with any attempt to slur another student's personal integrity on the basis of race, ethnicity, or religion, will result in immediate dismissal from class for that session. Continued abuses will result in disciplinary action with the appropriate administrators.

Here's the syllabus via Campus Reform:

The outlet said Aultman teaches LGBT politics at the school. While Aultman isn't listed in Brooklyn College's faculty directory, the school's Media Relations Manager Rich Pietras on Friday told TheBlaze he believes Aultman is an adjunct professor. Brooklyn College is part of the City University of New York public college system.

The whip comes down

Campus Reform said after it contacted Brooklyn College, Pietras said the school was "not aware of this classroom guideline." Because the school "believes that all classroom guidelines should be crafted to support learning," the outlet said the school asked the professor "to not dismiss students from the session, but rather to consider a range of effective pedagogies instead and to use the college policy with regard to gender discrimination."

A student who dropped the class after reading the misgendering warning told Campus Reform that "failing to refer to someone by their preferred pronoun should not result in the immediate dismissal from class."

"It is unreasonable to expect everyone to be accepting of the new standards of proper or acceptable behavior that the twenty-first century has made way for with its fast-changing dynamic," the student added to the outlet. "[The professor] has asked his students to address him by the letter 'B' in addition to using the pronouns 'they/them' when making mention of him. It is one thing to ask to be referred to as a member of the opposite sex, but another thing to ask to be referred to in the third person."

Campus Reform said another Brooklyn College professor — who sent the syllabus on behalf of the student and requested to remain anonymous — noted the lack of due process and threat to students' First Amendment rights.

"This is a particularly aggressive abuse of what is clearly a trend towards enforcing speech codes on students and faculty," the professor said, according to the outlet.

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