Student Ally

Gay Dad Speaks Out For Kansas Teacher Forced To Resign Over Anti-Bullying Video

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Rob Watson and his sons

Conway Springs, Kansas social studies teacher Tom Leahy was forced to resign after showing students anti-bullying short film Love Is All You Need?, and now gay dad Rob Watson has something to say about it.

In an open letter to Leahy and the Conway Springs School Board posted over at The New Civil Rights Movement, Watson wonders what affect the homophobia exhibited at the school would have on his own two kids:

I am the gay dad of two seventh graders. The colony exercise that took place, in which a mob had declared they would reject their dad from the world, would have devastated and shamed them. They would have suffered in silence, but the harm would go deep.

So too, was the harm felt by a number of your LGBT students. They, in various stages of self awareness, are also likely hidden from you. That does not mean you are free to cease protecting them, it means you have even a greater responsibility to do so.

Watson then goes on to urge Leahy to rescind his resignation and fight for his job:

Mr. Leahy, I don’t know what pressure you are under to resign, but you must resist it. What you did in showing the film at risk to yourself was heroic.

A petition to reinstate Leahy has nearly 3,000 signatures, and the school board contact information is here.

Take a look into the original short film and its impact below.