The grandparents and adoptive parents of an 8-year-old little girl have been told that she can no longer attend the Christian school she goes to unless she meets some conditions.
Did she bring a gun to school or make reference to a gun? No. Did she do anything violent or bully other children? No. Did she bring drugs or a knife to school? No.
Sunnie’s parents were told that she looks like a boy and that some students have been confused over whether she is a boy or a girl. (A simple solution to this problem would be for the confused students to be told that Sunnie is a girl.) Sunnie’s parents were told that unless her boyish appearance changed, that she could no longer attend this school–all in the name of God, of course.
Doris and Carroll Thompson are Sunnie’s grandparents.
They adopted and raised the little girl and took her out of Timberlake Christian School when they received the letter from the K-8 principal.
“You’re probably aware that Timberlake Christian School is a religious, Bible-believing institution providing education in a distinctly Christian environment,” the letter stated.
It goes on to say that students have been confused about whether Sunnie is a boy or a girl. It specifies that administrators can refuse enrollment for condoning sexual immorality, practicing a homosexual lifestyle or alternative gender identity. It even referenced specific Bible verses that affirm these beliefs.
“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,” the letter goes on.
The Thompsons said they have no desire to re-enroll Sunnie in the school.
Clearly, the idea of rigid, zero tolerance has entered the Christian schools. I can’t imagine how this must make this little girl feel and how this might permanently effect her feelings for God and Christianity.
I was a tomboy myself. I don’t remember ever being told that I looked like a boy, but at some times I had long hair and at others time short hair depending on what was the popular style. Anyone remember the Dorothy Hamill?
My number one playmate until 5th grade was the boy next door. I had Tonto, the Lone Ranger, Silver, and Scout. He had GI Joe and a Hot Wheels racetrack. If it was warm enough, we were outside. And my belief as a young child was that if he didn’t have to wear a shirt neither did I.
None of us were scarred. None of us turned out weird. None of us ended up with gender identity confusion. At the young age of eight and below, gender and anything to do with sex was the last thing on our mind. It wasn’t important. It didn’t matter. We just wanted to be kids, and the adults in our lives were happy to let us do just that.