Culture & the Family

Narrative-driven activists should stop harassing innocent

Staff | March 26, 2024

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 26, 2024) — Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs President Jonathan Small today called on activists to stop harassing innocent children and their families to perpetuate a false narrative regarding the recent suicide of Owasso teenager Dagny Ellis Benedict, who recently identified as nonbinary and called herself Nex Benedict.

“The recent tragic suicide of a girl, born Dagny Ellis Benedict but more recently calling herself Nex Benedict, is heartbreaking,” Small said. “It’s extremely disturbing that activists, dedicated to false narratives about Benedict’s suicide, are making matters worse by continuing to call for investigations of other children for events that were unrelated to Benedict’s suicide.

“An extensive investigation of a school-bathroom fight, which was started by Benedict a day before the teen’s suicide, has been ruled by Owasso police and the Tulsa County district attorney to not have caused Benedict’s death.

“Despite the extensive investigation, activists are now calling for further investigations of the other youths involved in the bathroom fight. This attempt to use the raw force and power of the government to harass the innocent—in this case, children—must stop.

“What activists are calling for is a massive departure from a fundamental bedrock of our country’s principles, which is that we are presumed innocent until proven guilty—and even more in this case where the facts and investigations demonstrate innocence in Benedict’s death.

“To now cave to activists’ demands would involve a monstrous retreat from common sense and conservative criminal justice reforms, which focus the government's force and power on violent offenders, not innocent children.

“I encourage any and all government personnel to reject the cries and calls for unjust behavior by the government through further, pointless investigation of those who are innocent of causing Benedict’s death.”


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