Two years after Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, Oregon school limits coach’s free speech

June 19, 2024

On June 27, 2022, Justice Gorsuch authored the majority opinion in Kennedy v. Bremerton School District. The court reaffirmed that when it comes to Coach Kennedy’s “free speech claim, our precedents remind us that the First Amendment’s protections extend to ‘teachers and students.’”

Coach Parks recently found himself in an eerily similar situation after speaking out against transgender males in women’s sports. Parks, Lake Oswego’s track and field coach, wrote numerous letters to the Oregon Student Activities Association, as well as his state Senator, Rob Wagner. 

As a coach, Parks expressed concerns over Oregon’s transgender laws because they are a disservice to girls’ sports. In one letter, Coach Parks referenced the International Olympic Committee’s hormone testing mandates and advocated for a distinctly separate transgender division.

Following these letters, Parks’ tenure as a coach was terminated. 

Parks represents the many coaches and athletes marginalized as a result of truly inequitable transgender laws. He plans to appeal his termination. 

"I'm going to fight now because I got wronged," he told the news station. "I... am fighting for girls, I'm fighting for female sports, and I'm fighting that it be fair for everybody."

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