Dear Mr. Hughes,
According to a May 11th report in the Raleigh News & Observer you and the Rowan-Salisbury School board have just adopted a policy “allowing high school students to carry pepper spray this fall.”
And why? Because it “may be useful for students who encounter transgender classmates in the bathroom.”
You claim that it is “purely defensive” as you referenced “the North Carolina law that limits LGBT rights, saying such sprays could help female students if they go to the bathroom and don’t know who’s coming in after them” (http://www.newsobserver.com/news/nation-world/national/article76827092.html#storylink=cpy).
If the blatant call to use violence with pepper spray against people who have already had salt poured into their wounds with HB2 is seen as being defensive, then you might need to reevaluate what it means to be a public servant.
This is not a defensive measure. It’s offensive. Mr. Hughes, you assume that transgender people are sexual predators. It is like you are licensing people to inflict violence on students who are transgendered because they are “different” or may appear that way.
You and the others on the school board are allowing labels and prejudice to dictate policy. But is it not the actions of people that define character? If hearsay and fear drive elected officials to create discriminatory rules, then you are guilty of not defending some of the very students you were elected to serve.
Mr. Hughes, I have a teenage daughter in a public school. If she wants to carry pepper spray, that’s fine. But as an 18-year veteran teacher in a variety of high schools, not once have I ever heard of a transgender imposter ever attacking a student in a school bathroom or locker room.
If I were like you (which I am not) and allowed speculation about people to become gospel, then I could classify every male republican in a prejudiced light because of the actions of people like Larry Craig, Dennis Hastert, and Jerry Sandusky.
Two of those men performed their sadistic deeds in bathrooms and locker rooms. Two of those men sexually molested school kids. Two of those men were elected republicans like yourself.
Makes one wonder where we should be taking our pepper spray.