An airline has suspended one of its employees after they were accused of threatening a 12-year-old transgender girl.
Last week, it was revealed that a trans girl in Oklahoma was threatened with castration and beatings for using the girls’ bathroom at her school.
Maddie was called “it,” “this thing,” “half baked maggot” and “the transgender” on a Facebook group for parents of students in Achille, Oklahoma.
Her family are now fundraising to be able to get out of the town, which has a population of around 500, and settle closer to the rest of their relatives in Houston, Texas.
They have so far raised around $25,000, reaching the initial $10,000 goal in just 22 hours.
Community groups also rushed to support Maddie after the abuse was made public, and schools in the district were closed for two days while the authorities made sure their security was sufficient.
People condemned the hateful remarks, one of which has now led Colorado-based Frontier Airlines – the eighth-largest commercial airline in the US – to suspend a pilot, according to the Associated Press.
A spokesman for the company, Jonathan Freed, said in a statement today (August 20) that the pilot had been suspended last week, on August 13, pending an investigation into the alleged threats.
He reportedly added that the airline does not condone discrimination, but declined to reveal the employee’s name.
The abuse and threats came in a tidal wave after local resident Jamie Crenshaw posted about Maddie, who has been out as trans since the fifth grade, used the girl’s bathroom because she didn’t know where the staff bathroom was.
One member called David Williams wrote: “You know we have open hunting seasons on them kind. Aint no bag limit in them either.”
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Eddie Belcher said: “If he wants to be a female make him a female.
“A good sharp knife will do the job really quick.”
Another group member, Kevin Lee Bickerstaff, said: “Just tell the kids to kick ass in the bathroom and it won’t want to come back!”
And one post by Seth Cooper suggested that Parker, who it is understood is Jamie Crenshaw’s son, “whip his ass until he quits coming to school.”
A silent demonstration was held on August 14 in Achilles with attendees dressing in red and making their feelings clear, despite constant rain.
Police cleared space for a counter-protest, but no-one showed up.
One of the protesters, Darius Douglas, said: “Today was a representation of every tear everyone has cried for being different.”
Douglas added: “Everybody’s different.
“You don’t have to understand it, you don’t have to like it, it doesn’t have to be your cup of tea, but there are going to be different people in this world, and all we have to do is get along.”