Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) attorneys filed a federal lawsuit in March on behalf of Dr. Allan M. Josephson, a professor at the University of Louisville. The university allegedly demoted, harassed and fired Josephson because of his views on transgender orthodoxy and gender dysphoria.
Josephson was hired by the university in 2003 to lead its Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology. Over his 16-year tenure, he built a program that “now has a national reputation,” according to The College Fix.
In 2017, Josephson participated in a panel discussion at The Heritage Foundation, discussing treatment approaches for youth experiencing gender dysphoria.
“The notion that gender identity should trump chromosomes, hormones, internal reproductive organs, external genitalia and secondary sex characteristics when classifying individuals is counter to medical science,” he argued.
He went on to reason, “Children persistently, insistently and consistently demand many things that are not good for them. A parent’s role is to resist these demands when parental wisdom trumps children’s limited life experience.”
The lawsuit claims that Josephson’s views offended some of his peers and colleagues, particularly those running the university’s campus LGBT center, who believe that all young children showing signs of gender dysphoria should be helped by the medical community to transition. They demanded that the university take disciplinary action against Josephson.
On Feb. 25 during his annual review, Josephson was told that the university would not be renewing his contract. In turn, Josephson filed a lawsuit against the university for violating his First and Fourteenth Amendment rights.
“Universities are supposed to be a marketplace of ideas, but the University of Louisville is turning itself into an assembly line of one thought,” said Travis Barham, an ADF attorney. “Dr. Josephson has had a long and distinguished career at the University of Louisville, leading and rebuilding its child psychiatry program. Public universities have no business demoting or firing professors simply because they hold a different view than their colleagues or the administration.”
The lawsuit, Josephson v. Bendapudi, has been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Kentucky and demands an injunction ordering the university to renew Josephson’s contract, restore his position as division chief and purge his personnel file of everything related to this matter.
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