An evangelical Christian college in Tennessee kicked a transgender student out of its dorms after it discovered that they'd had top surgery.
Yanna Awtrey alleges that he was expelled from Welch College in Gallatin just hours after the procedure.
Top surgery is a term used to describe female-to-male sex reassignment surgery that may include bilateral masectomy and male chest reconstruction.
In a Facebook post, 21-year-old Awtrey said:
The physical pain right now is nothing compared to witnessing a lack of empathy for our fellow man.
I don’t understand other people’s cruelty.
Welch College is operated by the National Association of Free Will Baptists, an evangelical Christian denomination that holds particularly conservative views.
Awtrey's parents are Free Will Baptist missionaries who live in Bulgaria, reports the Huffington Post, and they wanted him to study at a college associated with their religious tradition.
Refusing to use the correct pronouns, president of Welch College Matt Pinson said:
Throughout Yanna’s time at Welch, we have treated her with love, respect, compassion, sensitivity, and privacy, though we always clearly communicated our community standards regarding gender identity.
We at Welch love Yanna and have shown her that love in a way that accords with our deeply held religious beliefs.
Writing in his Facebook post, Awtrey, who is estranged from his parents, said:
You say God is the personification of goodness, that he cannot do evil by his hand. Yet the costs seem so high.
I’ve seen and heard my trans friends attempt to die by their own hands because their relatives prefer their death over existence.
Speaking about why he had top surgery, he wrote that it was:
an act of self-preservation and self-love.