On Fox News, Oklahoma State Superintendent accuses the media and activist groups of “lying” about death of trans student to push an “LGBTQ plus agenda”

Ryan Walters claimed Nex Benedict was not bullied and vowed that Oklahoma public schools will “not affirm gender ideology”

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Citation From the March 19, 2024, edition of Fox News' Fox News @ Night

TRACE GALLAGHER (ANCHOR): Nex Benedict got into a fight inside a school bathroom, died the next day. The medical examiner says this was suicide, you say that LGBTQ groups are pushing a false narrative. Explain what you mean by that, sir.

RYAN WALTERS (OKLAHOMA STATE SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION): Yes, since the beginning, Trace, we saw these groups lie and say that this student died because of a fight in a bathroom. That's not true. We also heard them lie and say that this student was bullied into the situation. That's turned out not to be true. We've heard President Biden. We've heard his press secretary. We've heard Kamala Harris lie about this. 

It is a tragedy, but we did not see a student be bullied and attacked and killed in a bathroom. That's simply not what happened. The left and these LGBTQ groups are lying about it to gain politically by attacking me, by attacking Oklahoma, by attacking conservative principles. And we're not gonna stand for it.

We want all students to be safe in Oklahoma, but we will not lie about gender ideology to kids. We're going to continue to affirm truth.

GALLAGHER: You mentioned about attacking you, and several groups have gone after you, including the Oklahoman writing this, quoting here, “Ryan Walters' response to Nex Benedict's death only causes more pain for Oklahoma's LGBTQ plus families. Nex's suicide should be a sobering warning to Walters and all those in authority who are passing laws laws to create policies that strip protections from the LGBTQ plus community. You are perpetrating conditions for what the CDC says is a serious public health problem.” And how would you respond to that, sir?

WALTERS: The media should be ashamed of themselves. The Oklahoman there is again perpetuating a lie. We have emphasized student safety. We want all of our students to be safe. This is not an instance where a kid was killed in a school. They are lying about it.

They are pushing an LGBTQ plus agenda to demonize conservatives. They want to attack me politically. They want to attack conservative idea -- they want to attack conservative principles which state the truth: There's boys and there's girls. We're gonna continue to focus in schools on academics and safety. We will not affirm their lies. We will not affirm gender ideology. And our local papers are completely left wing rags that are going to continue to lie about this in order to attack me.