News (USA)

Lawyers wants a judge to recuse himself because he won’t refer to transgender women as “males”

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The rabidly anti-LGBTQ legal group Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) is asking a judge to recuse himself from a case involving transgender female athletes because he won’t misgender the athletes.

The ADF, a Southern Poverty Law Center-certified hate group, is representing the families of three high school runners in a Connecticut lawsuit attempting to prevent transgender athletes from competing in girls’ high school sports.

Related: Lawyer calls judge a “gay fat f*g” but claims he can’t be homophobic because he has a gay cousin

The families of students Selina Soule, Chelsea Mitchell, and Alanna Smith argue that transgender girls have an unfair advantage in sports, which prevents their daughters from advancing to competitions where they could be considered by college scouts.

They complained after two Black transgender athletes, Andraya Yearwood of Cromwell High School and Terry Miller of Bloomfield High School, won several competitions.

During a conference call with ADF lawyers, District Judge Robert Chatigny told them to stop misgendering the aforementioned trans athletes. Eventually, all parties agreed to refer to the athletes as “transgender females” rather than as “males.”

“That’s the more accurate terminology,” Chatigny told ADF lawyers, “and I think that it fully protects your client’s legitimate interests. Referring to these individuals as ‘transgender females’ is consistent with science, common practice, and perhaps human decency. To refer to them as ‘males,’ period, is not accurate, certainly not as accurate, and I think it’s needlessly provocative.”

The ADF lawyers ultimately disagreed, saying that the case is fundamentally about gender and that they don’t see Yearwood and Miller as female at all.

Now, they’ve filed a motion for the judge to recuse himself because his suggestion to call Yearwood and Miller trans females “would leave an impartial observer gravely concerned that the Court has prejudged the matter, rejected core aspects of Plaintiffs’ case before hearing the evidence and legal arguments, and assumed the role of advocate for the defendants.”

This isn’t so different from the time that Trump-appointed Judge Kyle Duncan of U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals deadnamed a trans inmate and denied her request to have her female name used on her incarceration records because, he said, trans rights are currently being debated in the courts, and thus, it’d be legally biased for a court to use a trans person’s personal pronouns.


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