Judge dismisses professor’s lawsuit over gender terms

PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (AP) – A judge dismissed a professor’s lawsuit against a small, public university in Ohio that rebuked him for not addressing a transgender student using the student’s preferred gender terms.

Nicholas Meriwether’s federal lawsuit alleged Shawnee State University officials violated his rights by compelling him to speak in a way that contradicts his Christian beliefs.

Schools officials contended such language was part of his job responsibilities, not speech protected by the First Amendment, and that the case should be dismissed. U.S. District Judge Susan Dlott dismissed it last week, agreeing that the way Meriwether addressed the student wasn’t protected under the First Amendment.

Asked whether Meriwether would further pursue the matter, his attorney says they are evaluating their next steps.

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