Students at the University of Southern Maine are demanding that their professor be replaced for saying that only two sexes exist.
On Sept. 7, according to the Bangor Daily News, education professor Christy Hammer allegedly said that only two biological sexes exist during a “Creating a Positive Learning Environment” class, which caused an uproar with graduate students in her class.
The report states that a heated discussion began over gender identity, and only one student in the class agreed with the professor. Most others in the class stated that a spectrum exists for gender and biological sex.
Campus Reform also reported on the incident.
On Sept. 14, Elizabeth Leibiger, who is non-binary and was absent on Sept. 7, brought up the discussion again. When she got an answer from the professor, stating that only two sexes exist, Leibiger felt “under personal attack.”
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On Sept. 7, according to the Bangor Daily News, education professor Christy Hammer allegedly said that only two biological sexes exist during a "Creating a Positive Learning Environment" class, which caused an uproar with graduate students in her class.
(University of Southern Maine)
“I asked [Hammer] how many sexes there were,” Leibiger said. “She said, ‘Two.’ I felt under personal attack.”
According to the report, 21 of the 22 students in Hammer’s class then decided to walk out during a class session on Sept. 14 and demanded for a restorative justice meeting to be held with the university’s School of Education and Human Development.
“I let her know I didn’t think she was qualified to teach a class about positive learning environments,” Leibiger said. “It’s the ultimate irony.”
The facilitated restorative justice meeting was conducted, but students told the news outlet that Hammer still didn’t budge, standing firm in her position that only the male and female sex designations exist.
In total, according to the report, almost two dozen graduate students in the class demanded that the university replace Hammer. They believe that the professor is transphobic, according to the report.
Because of her decision, students don’t want to return to the classroom, according to the report, stating that they’ll only come back if a new instructor is selected.
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University of Southern Maine campus
(University of Southern Maine/Facebook)
Interim Provost Adam Tuchinsky told the Bangor Daily News that it is providing “support” to students through the incident.
“We are aware of this situation and are taking steps to provide students with the support needed,” Tuchinsky said.
One student told the news outlet that the professor should either go through diversity training or retire.
“I want her to do some diversity training at least — or just retire,” Leibiger said.
On Monday, the university told the Bangor Daily News that an “alternative” section for the class, which is required for graduate students, would be made. The spokesperson also said that the professor wouldn’t be removed.
“We have developed an alternative plan for this class and will be opening a new section of this course for those students who would like to move,” a university spokesperson said. “The original section taught by professor Hammer will continue for any student who wishes to remain in that class.”
University of Southern Maine campus
(University of Southern Maine campus/Facebook)
Reportedly 1,806 people signed a petition stating that the university “must support Professor Christy Hammer and Biological Fact.”
“A university that cannot teach facts because students find them too hard to handle is useless as an educational institution. We the undersigned ask USM President Jacqueline Edmondson, Interim Provost Adam Tuchinsky and Chair of the Teacher Education Department Flynn Ross to stand firmly behind Professor Hammer and issue a public statement to the effect that she will neither be replaced nor required to stop stating the fact that sex in humans is binary,” the petition states.
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Hammer previously won the Martin Luther King, Jr. New Hampshire state award for anti-racism in schools in 2000 and is the co-founder of People Against Racism in Education.
The University of Southern Maine didn’t provide additional comment when contacted by Fox News Digital.