School board member caught on camera saying ‘cry me a river’ and pretending to play a violin about trans suicides
A school board member was caught on camera saying “cry me a river” about trans suicides to LGBT+ activists.
She also made arm movements suggestive of playing a violin.
The Indiana school board member, identified as Ann Ennis, had been in a November 25 meeting of the Evansville-Vandeburgh County School Corporation .
The meeting was attended by LGBT+ activists from the Tri-State Alliance (TSA), an activism group from Southeastern Illinois, southwestern Indiana and western Kentucky, who were there to speak about the needs of transgender students that had not been met by a school under the district.
Ten activists from the group had come to the November 25 meeting of the school board, according to the Illinois Eagle. The TSA said that six of them signed up to speak, with only one initially able to speak to the board before being stopped by board president Karen Ragland.
The other five TSA activists were eventually able to speak to the board after twice protesting Ragland’s attempts to prevent them speaking.
Tri-State Alliance activists are regular attendees of the school board meetings, and have previously met with Ennis.
After the meeting, Ennis approached the activists. In video that has since been posted on Facebook, one of the activists can be heard saying to Ennis, “So transphobic. When you met with us, you were so transphobic.”
Ennis can then be seen backing away from the group while saying “cry me a river” and making a gesture with both arms that appears to be a violin-playing motion.
“Cry me a river?” an activist responds, with another saying, “Oh, cry us a river about the kids who have died?”
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The first activist then says, “Kids commit suicide, you don’t care” while the second adds, “You’re a sh**ty person.”
The school board has regulations protecting students on the basis of their sexual orientation, but has yet to add language that would protect students on the basis of their gender identity.
According to a 2017 study published by the Indiana State Department of Health, suicide is the third-highest cause of death of 10- to 14-year-olds in Indiana, and the second-highest of 15- to 24-year-olds.
The Samaritans are the UK’s suicide reduction charity and their free helpline number is 116 123.
More information about supporting trans children can be found on the Mermaids website.