Members of the LGBT group the Tri-State Alliance (TSA) of Southeastern Illinois, southwestern Indiana and western Kentucky. went to a to speak with the Evansville-Vandeburgh County School Corporation school board to talk about the unmet needs of LGB and transgender students at a school in their district.
Six of the 10 activists in the group signed up to speak at the meeting, but only one was allowed as the others were allegedly denied by board president Karen Ragland. Five more were eventually allowed to speak only after vocal protests were launched by the TSA.
After the meeting, a board member identified as Ann Ennis, approached the protesters to confront them.
In the video footage posted on the TSA’s Facebook page, one of the activists—identified as TSA President Wally Paynter can be heard calling Ennis, “so transphobic. When you met with us, you were so transphobic.”
At that point Ennis backs away from the group saying “cry me a river,” while making a sweeping gesture with her arms and hands that appears to be a violin-playing motion.
“Cry me a river?” Paynter asks.
Another person can then be heard saying, “oh, cry us a river about the kids who have died?”
Paynter, then says, “kids commit suicide, you don’t care.”
The second activist added, “you’re a… shitty person” before the video cut off.
According to a study published in 2017 by the Indiana State Department of Health, the third-highest cause of death among 10- to 14-year-old Indiana citizens is suicide. Among 15- to 24-year-olds, it is the second-highest cause.
You can contact Ann Ennis and School President Karen Ragland by calling or emailing the information below.
This horrendous and sick behavior cannot go unpunished.