American Hero General Boykin Fired — And Now Rehired — Following Transgender Bathroom Joke

By The Stream Published on May 20, 2016

Lt. Gen. William “Jerry” Boykin has now been rehired at Hampden-Sydney College after he was fired following an LGBT campaign to remove him over a joke.

In the wake of President Obama’s executive order last Friday pressing public schools to open up girls’ restrooms to boys who identify as girls, Boykin joked at an event in Florida that “the first man who goes into the restroom with my daughter will not have to worry about surgery.”

Boykin clarified his statement in an interview at Fox News: “I never said homosexuals. I never said transgenders. I was really talking about these perverts who would use this as a way to get into the bathrooms with our wives and daughters.”

Boykin was one of the original members of the U.S. Army’s Delta Force, and later led the Delta Force and the Green Berets. Many who took offense at his joke, however, were apparently undeterred by either his clarification or his heroic military service, and pushed hard for his removal.

But if pressure cost him his job, pressure may also have restored it, since the reversal came in the wake of national attention and outrage from conservatives. Last night Hampden-Sydney College released a statement on Facebook announcing that General Boykin “will be with Hampden-Sydney for one more year.”

“I am deeply grateful for all the support — through social media, calls and emails — that I have received over the past few days,” Boykin commented. “This situation has been a great reminder of how our First Amendment‬ principles are worth standing up for and defending.”

Boykin, who also serves as the executive vice president of the Family Research Council, emphasized the strength that comes from rallying together in the cause of freedom. “The radical Left and LGBT activists completely underestimate the impact of ‪‎freedom‬-loving Americans‬ banding together to protect our First Amendment freedoms,” he said. “Many people spoke out on my behalf and I am eternally grateful that they stood with me.”

He stressed two additional points:

Second, never cave in when you know that you are standing for what is right and true, for these are the principles that made this nation great. STAND, even if it means you lose your job. STAND, even if it means you lose your life. The founding principles of this nation are worth defending, even if it costs you.

Third, my reinstatement is a victory for academic freedom and free thought on a college campus. The free exchange of conflicting ideas must be the bedrock of every college campus in America. This essential exchange has been greatly wounded by the PC police, but it can be restored to college campuses around the country if, in unity, freedom-loving Americans speak out.

He concluded by thanking “the leadership of Hampden-Sydney College for the courage they have demonstrated in reversing their decision.” The college president, Dennis G. Stevens, had previously sent Boykin a note telling him his contract would not be renewed. Boykin has held the Wheat Visiting Professorship in Leadership at Hampden-Sydney for the last nine years.

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