Bugg v. Benson: Southern Utah University: Professor Sues After Being Disciplined for Not Using Student’s Preferred Pronouns


Southern Utah University

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Case Overview

In August 2022, Theater Professor Richard Bugg sued administrators at Southern Utah University for First Amendment retaliation, alleging he was punished for refusing to use a student’s preferred gender-neutral pronouns while offering instead to use the student’s preferred proper name. The student filed a Title IX complaint, and SUU determined that Bugg violated university policy by engaging in “conduct that constitutes ‘discrimination’ and ‘harassment’ based on gender identity.” Bugg is represented by FIRE Faculty Legal Defense Fund attorney Jerome Mooney.