Lieutenant General William “Jerry” Boykin (Ret.), a genuine hero who was not only one of the original members of U.S. Army’s Delta Force, but wound up commanding it, led the Green Berets and the Army’s Special Warfare Center, was fired from Hampden-Sydney College, an all-male college in Virginia, earlier this week for remarks he made about the movement to allow transgendered people into any bathroom they choose.
Boykin, fed up with the nonsense that pervades the entire transgender bathroom issue, was recorded speaking at a Florida event, saying bluntly, “Somebody will be recording this and this’ll be on YouTube before it’s all over with. But I will tell you what: the first man that walks in my daughter’s bathroom, he ain’t going to have to worry about the surgery.”
One alumnus of Hampden-Sydney College got wind of the recording, and instigated a movement of roughly 150 people to write the college’s interim president Dennis G. Stevens, whining about what they perceived as a threat.
Stevens didn’t bother with the niceties of discussing the remarks with Boykin; instead, since Boykin, who held the Wheat Visiting Professorship in Leadership for nine years, was untenured, Stevens simply wrote Boykin to tell him he had been fired.
Boykin wrote on Facebook, “the LGBT community once again came after me, claiming that I was calling for violence against transgender people. Well, that is simply not the case and I have never called for violence against anyone. I was referring to perverts who will use these policies to get into locker rooms with girls and women, and I object to that. My statement was meant to be humor and not a call for violence, which everyone in my audience understood as humor.”
Boykin has been in the crosshairs of the political left for years; as executive vice president of the Family Research Council, which the radical Southern Poverty Law Center calls a “hate group” for “defaming gays and lesbians,” his views have elicited the left’s ire.
In March 2013, the “Young Democrats” at Hampden-Sydney College wrote a public letter to Boykin in the Hampden-Sydney student newspaper, ripping him for his opposition to the military permitting gays and lesbians to make their sexual proclivities public. The letter attempted to stifle Boykin from speaking out, stating:
While we acknowledge your freedom of speech, we remind you that your position renders you a representative of this institution. Frankly, the fact you would make such ill-informed, inconsiderate, and offensive tirades, in whatever capacity, makes you a poor representative of Hampden-Sydney and the students and faculty who make up our community. It would truly be a travesty and embarrassment if one outside of our community were to hear your bellicose words and assume that it reflects the culture and character of the Hampden-Sydney community.
“My reinstatement is a victory for academic freedom and free thought on a college campus. The free exchange of conflicting ideas must be the bedrock of every college campus in America.”
Lieutenant General William “Jerry” Boykin
I am deeply grateful for all the support – through social media, calls and emails – that I have received over the past few days. This situation has been a great reminder of how our #FirstAmendment principles are worth standing up for and defending.
I am pleased to announce that I have been rehired as the Wheat Professor at Hampden-Sydney College. I look forward to returning to Hampden-Sydney in the fall to continue my work equipping the next generation of young men to lead this nation. Hampden-Sydney College is a fine school with a proud history of young men who have led our country, and I am honored to be a part of shaping the next generation of leaders.
With that said, I would like to share some thoughts on this experience.
First, there is strength in unified numbers. The radical Left and LGBT activists completely underestimate the impact of #freedom-loving #Americans banding together to protect our First Amendment freedoms. Many people spoke out on my behalf and I am eternally grateful that they stood with me. Their unified voices allowed me to return to Hampden-Sydney.
Second, never cave in when you know that you are standing for what is right and true, for these are the principles that made this nation great. STAND, even if it means you lose your job. STAND, even if it means you lose your life. The founding principles of this nation are worth defending, even if it costs you.
Third, my reinstatement is a victory for academic freedom and free thought on a college campus. The free exchange of conflicting ideas must be the bedrock of every college campus in America. This essential exchange has been greatly wounded by the PC police, but it can be restored to college campuses around the country if, in unity, freedom-loving Americans speak out. Bottom line: when you stand, freedom prevails.
Finally, I would like to thank the leadership of Hampden-Sydney College for the courage they have demonstrated in reversing their decision and allowing me to remain a part of the Hampden-Sydney community