SEOUL, Sept. 8 (Korea Bizwire) – An elementary school teacher who gave an interview to an internet news channel in July that was titled “Three Reasons Why Feminism is Needed in Schools” has since become the target of a malicious online smear campaign.
To protest the teacher’s treatment, over 20 rights groups converged on Gwanghwamun Square on September 7 and held a press conference under the banner “Organizations that Support the Feminist Teacher and Feminist Education”.
The assembled activists strongly condemned the censure the teacher had received, saying, “An elementary school teacher in Seoul gave an interview on the need to teach students about feminism and has been suffering for over a month from slander and verbal abuse”.
According to the rights groups, online media outlets and commenters had taken the teacher’s lessons about the Korea Queer Culture Festival, prejudice against minorities and respect for human rights and twisted them into attempts to encourage homosexuality and misandry.
They also stated they were preparing a legal case on behalf of the teacher. They further explained that they will file lawsuits citing personal damages against the online media outlets and will report online commenters to the police.
The teacher in question is on sick leave after facing difficulty coping with the deluge of online criticism.
The groups warned that what befell the teacher is a nationwide issue. “Similar situations have occurred in Gyeonggi Province and Daegu. We can no longer stand on the sidelines and do nothing about hate groups that espouse anti-human rights and anti-gender equality opinions. We intend to forcefully respond to reports and behavior that constantly indulge in hate, slander and libel,” an affiliated member of one of the groups declared.