Timberlake Christian School took it upon themselves to tell an eight-year-old that she was not welcome back at school next year because of her tomboy style. How Christ-like! The School sent a letter to Sunnie Kahle‘s family saying that since she did not follow the school’s “biblical standards,” she would not be allowed to return. Also she’s eight-years-old. What did you wear when you were eight?
The letter contained some real demonstrations of the Christian spirit, such as, mentioning that “students have been confused about whether Sunnie is a boy or girl and specifies that administrators can refuse enrollment for condoning sexual immorality, practicing a homosexual lifestyle or alternative gender identity.” She’s eight. She wears pants and has short hair. Way to be open, loving, and Christian.
We believe that unless Sunnie as well as her family clearly understand that God has made her female and her dress and behavior need to follow suit with her God-ordained identity, that TCS is not the best place for her future education.
I’m glad that God took some time off from making the universe to specify that women can’t have short hair and wear pants, and that to do so would be absolute confirmation of an “alternative gender identity.” I didn’t realize that I was trans, and so I suppose I’ll start living my life as a man now.
Jesus, of course, was a great champion of isolating, alienating, and bullying young children based on wildly important things such as clothing. In fact, I believe it’s written in the Bible that “By bullying defenseless children, one honors God.” It’s right after the verses and verses preaching love, kindness, forgiveness, and that judgement is not for humans.
If you believe in God, I can promise you one thing. God does not care if you’re gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, transgender, an alternative to the gender binary, or any other deviation from cisgendered, heterosexual, and dressed according to Mad Men‘s first season gender roles. Exactly zero percent of those things make you a better or worse person, and your higher power does not care. Look at the world. There’s bigger fish to fry.
Kahle is devastated about not being able to return to her school, and was actually pulled out mid-year as soon as her grandparents, Doris and Carroll Thompson (who have adopted her) received the letter. They say they have no interest in sending her back there, and I couldn’t agree with them more. But it’s still heartbreaking for Kahle, who I’ll remind you is eight-years-old and got caught up in some ignorant adults’ hang ups.
This looks pretty bad for Christians, who in my experience are by and large wonderful people who have an awful PR team. It seems like the most batshit are the loudest, and that the most publicized interpretation of Christianity bears little resemblance to the actual religion. What’s the point of all of those WWJD paraphernalia anyways, if you’re going to just shove it in a drawer when it comes time to actually be a Christ-like?