Save Women's Sport - the pearl clutching begins

barbk

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Emma Weyant, today's second-place finisher in the 500 Free at the NCAA championships got huge applause from the crowd. Lia Thomas finished first and got a tepid reaction and some boos. Swimming World published an editorial advocating that Thomas' finish be labeled with an asterisk, much as the juiced baseball stats were labeled. Nearly US 300 Olympians and Paralympians were among the 5400+ signing petitions asking for a fair playing field for biologic women/girls. While I recognized the names of a number of the signers, the two from the figure skating universe that I noticed were Kitty Carruthers Conrad and Peter Carruthers.
 

MacMadame

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Emma Weyant, today's second-place finisher in the 500 Free at the NCAA championships got huge applause from the crowd. Lia Thomas finished first and got a tepid reaction and some boos. Swimming World published an editorial advocating that Thomas' finish be labeled with an asterisk, much as the juiced baseball stats were labeled. Nearly US 300 Olympians and Paralympians were among the 5400+ signing petitions asking for a fair playing field for biologic women/girls. While I recognized the names of a number of the signers, the two from the figure skating universe that I noticed were Kitty Carruthers Conrad and Peter Carruthers.
How "sportsmanlike" that is.
 

MacMadame

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Just ran across this post on my Facebook timeline. It makes a lot of the same arguments made here but it also includes some facts that put some of Lia's times in perspective. If you listen to some people, she's winning everything and dominating the sport but this is not actually true if you look at all of her times across all of her events. The 500m she won is a distance that many swimmers hate and so don't train for it also.

 

AxelAnnie

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Emma Weyant, today's second-place finisher in the 500 Free at the NCAA championships got huge applause from the crowd. Lia Thomas finished first and got a tepid reaction and some boos. Swimming World published an editorial advocating that Thomas' finish be labeled with an asterisk, much as the juiced baseball stats were labeled. Nearly US 300 Olympians and Paralympians were among the 5400+ signing petitions asking for a fair playing field for biologic women/girls. While I recognized the names of a number of the signers, the two from the figure skating universe that I noticed were Kitty Carruthers Conrad and Peter Carruthers.
As well they should! It is a shonda!
There has been a lot of media coverage lately about transgender athletes competing in women's sport, particularly in GQP states where they are introducing laws banning transgender athletes from competing in women's sports. It has just become a hot topic in Australia because a politician has introduced a private member's bill into Australian Parliament about it. For reference I have found a website on the topic but also and article to give it some context.



In fact the politician who is one of my local members, was interviewed on radio and could not name anyone who had approached her about it or basically refused to name anyone.

From my perspective as a sports administrator for figure skating here in Australia, I do not see this as a problem. In fact it is just another means to put down transgender people generally. We had same sex marriage, a recent religious discrimination bill that was withdrawn because of issues around transgender demonisation and discrimination, and now this.

I would like to think that figure is one of the most inclusive environments. In fact apart from Mens and Womens Singles, everything is or can be a mixed event. If you are looking for where the dangers and risks are it has been sexual abuse at hands of mainly male coaches, skating partnerships where the male has been abusive and coaches who are obsessed with winning at all costs.

What are people's thoughts on this? Surely these issues can be dealt with on a case by case basis rather than legislating about this sort of things. Because it creates the perception that it is the norm rather than the exception.
To me, it is quite simple. You compete with the gender you are born with.
Why would that not be inclusive? Men and women have different biological imperatives.

I do not see it as a way to put down transgender people. That is a false flag. It is a way to keep sports competitive and fair. Most sports have qualifying divisions. Either by weight, height, gender or whatever.

Would you want a heavyweight boxer to compete in the light-weight division?

As to a case-by-case basis? That doesn't seem right. What would be the criteria be?

If we could all look beyond the "politics" of it, it is much more clear.
 

caseyedwards

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So after reading that do you support abolishing all “mens” and “womens” divisions of sports and just having one division where Everyone competes together?
 

Aussie Willy

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So after reading that do you support abolishing all “mens” and “womens” divisions of sports and just having one division where Everyone competes together?
No one is suggesting that or supporting that. Where did you get that idea from?
 

Jot the Dot Dot

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No one is suggesting that or supporting that. Where did you get that idea from?
Because if all one has to do is 'identify' as the gender of your choice, then the terms male and female become meaningless. If there are criteria of hormone levels, what are they? People who have lived all their lives with male hormones until X weeks before an event will still have an advantage, and the question becomes is that an unfair advantage.
 

Aussie Willy

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Because if all one has to do is 'identify' as the gender of your choice, then the terms male and female become meaningless. If there are criteria of hormone levels, what are they? People who have lived all their lives with male hormones until X weeks before an event will still have an advantage, and the question becomes is that an unfair advantage.
Well the question was getting rid of male and female categories and whether someone supported that. I am just kind of :confused: at the question.
 

Asli

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I think in a sport like swimming, biological women have no chance if trans women compete in the same category. Trans women have stronger cardio vascular systems. Their hearts and lungs are bigger. They have broader shoulders, longer arms and legs and are overall stronger. No kind of transition takes away these advantages.

Lia Thomas' case is a clear example of this. She went from being ranked 420 something in the men's category to first in women's.

Swimming has nothing to do with gender and everything to do with biology.

What motivation will biological girls have to practice sports, if they have no chance of winning?
 
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MacMadame

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Lia Thomas' case is a clear example of this. She went from being ranked 420 something in the men's category to first in women's.
No, she didn't. This is a lie made up by transphobes.

First of all, there is no ranking like that. You aren't ranked X in swimming. Each swimmer takes part in a number of events. They specialize in strokes and in distances. They are ranked in each event. So a swimmer might be #1 in 50m breaststroke but #8 in 100m freestyle. And not do any other events so does not have a ranking in them.

Before she transitioned, Lia was a very good swimmer who often podiumed in her events. After transitioning, she didn't do that well (due to losing muscle mass, etc.) but has worked very hard to improve her times and now is starting to podium again.

So the "ranked 420 something" is bullshit and the "first in women's" is bullshit.

What motivation will biological girls have to practice sports, if they have no chance of winning?
First of all, transgender women have been participating in sports for decades and they aren't winning everything. Second, most people who take part in sports don't win. If only the winners were motivated to participate in sports, pretty much no one would do them.
 

Asli

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No, she didn't. This is a lie made up by transphobes.

I'm pretty sure I read it in an American swimming magazine when my daughter pointed it out. :confused:

Anyway, what is the relevance of gender to swimming?

Women swim in a different category because of the different body type that they are born with. Does a hormone treatment at 20 years of age take away the advantages of a trans woman? Does it shrink her body and her organs to the size of a biological woman?
 
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Theatregirl1122

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Fairness in sports is important. That's all I want to say.

So is making a space for vulnerable people to live their lives. So is treating each other like human beings. So is not marginalizing people. I remember when I was a kid we were taught that sports is about more than "win at all costs" but when the time comes to build a strawman argument to keep transgender people out of public life, suddenly sports isn't about teamwork, health, comradery, leadership, or sportsmanship. It's about winning and scholarships.

And the research that's actually out there doesn't matter. Only what people "read somewhere." Everyone who wins a sport at a high level has a genetic advantage. But a whole bunch of people who never gave one single sh!t about women or women's sports suddenly appear to concern troll the existence of trans women and they whip up girls and their parents to "speak to the manager" about the minute possibility that they might not win because a trans girl might beat them. You'd think people might notice when they are being led around by the nose by an agenda, but I guess not.

Kindness and decency and inclusion are important in everything, but not as important as winning, I guess.
 

Asli

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Kindness and decency and inclusion are important in everything, but not as important as winning, I guess.
That's how competition works. Ask Trusova. ;)

The rest of the world that you're describing and you're obviously familiar with, I don't recognize it and take your word for it. In my daughters' school the whole class does sports together. There was one transgender classmate and he was left the choice of changing room obviously. Nobody seemed to have a secret agenda.
 

Theatregirl1122

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That's how competition works. Ask Trusova. ;)

The rest of the world that you're describing and you're obviously familiar with, I don't recognize it and take your word for it. In my daughters' school the whole class does sports together. There was one transgender classmate and he was left the choice of changing room obviously. Nobody seemed to have a secret agenda.

Please. I’m not talking about schools that care about their kids and are doing things right. I’m talking about the news that is whipping up this controversy which I’m sure you do recognize since you were just reading about Lia Thomas’s swimming ranking.
 

Asli

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Please. I’m not talking about schools that care about their kids and are doing things right. I’m talking about the news that is whipping up this controversy which I’m sure you do recognize since you were just reading about Lia Thomas’s swimming ranking.
At Lia Thomas' level it becomes all about results and IMO she has an unfair advantage over biological girls. This has nothing to do with the right of transgender people to live their life as their real selves. So feel free to lynch me.
 

MacMadame

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I'm pretty sure I read it in an American swimming magazine when my daughter pointed it out. :confused:
Show me the USA Swimming's official rankings and we can talk. As I said, that's not how swimming works. And, even if it did, Lia's results do not put her in the #1 spot.

Anyway, what is the relevance of gender to swimming?

Women swim in a different category because of the different body type that they are born with. Does a hormone treatment at 20 years of age take away the advantages of a trans woman? Does it shrink her body and her organs to the size of a biological woman?
We've had these discussions several times in this thread and you participated. Therefore I assume you are not really interested in the answers.


Fairness in sports is important. That's all I want to say.
It's perfectly fair for Lia Thomas to compete in the women's division in swimming. She has followed all the rules and she has worked hard to improve her swimming.
 

aka_gerbil

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Show me the USA Swimming's official rankings and we can talk. As I said, that's not how swimming works. And, even if it did, Lia's results do not put her in the #1 spot.
They do have an extensive, searchable database where they rank swimmers by time in each distance and event.


It’s kind of like the seasons best list for skating. They don’t have an overall ranking, but they very much rank everyone who swims a particular stroke/distance by fastest event time across all events. My understanding is that the event Thomas has the fastest time in as female, she had only the 420 something fastest time in that same stroke/distance as a male swimmer.
 

MacMadame

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They don’t have an overall ranking, but they very much rank everyone who swims a particular stroke/distance by fastest event time across all events.
That's what I said. They rank each event separately.

My understanding is that the event Thomas has the fastest time in as female, she had only the 420 something fastest time in that same stroke/distance as a male swimmer.
There aren't that many people ranked in that event according to their database. There aren't even 100 people. So where is that 420 coming from. (Actually I know. It's something some Fox talking head said and people are just repeating.)
 

Asli

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This article gives some of her best time rankings when he competed as a man as opposed to now.

They compare three distances in which she had the 554th, 65th and 32nd best times in his last season in the men's category. In the women's, she ranked up to 5th, 1st and 8th respectively.

I usually don't write this sort of thing without a source and I apologize that I did this above.

Also, Lia Thomas is competing within the rules and nothing is her fault. I'm sorry she sometimes has to stand alone on the podium while the 2nd to 4th-placed women celebrate together. :( It looks bad for the sport and everyone involved.

However, IMO the rules have to be changed to take into account the numerous and unchangeable physical advantages of biological men over women, even if their gender is female. Otherwise this is just the beginning. Athletics, cycling, speed skating, you name it. Even figure skating, now that the Russian girls are out.

The participation of (biological) women in sports and their stardom as full-time athletes is recent and very hard-earned. Equality is still far away. So let's not take our eyes off the ball! :inavoid:
 

Theatregirl1122

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I don't think we agree on what the ball is if you think further marginalizing some of the most marginalized people in the world is how we avoid taking our eyes off the ball.

Telling oppressed group that in order to join the unoppressed club they have to oppress someone else is a lie that those in power tell. We don't need to find someone even more oppressed than we are to marginalize in order to protect ourselves. It's a trap. You never get to sit at the oppressors table no matter what.

Also, the phrase "biological women" is a dogwhistle. You give yourself away when you say it. Also when you start your post by misgendering Lia.
 

MacMadame

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Otherwise this is just the beginning.
No, it's not. Transgender women have been participating in sports at all levels since forever. They have been participating in the Olympics for almost 20 years. This isn't the beginning at all.

They compare three distances in which she had the 554th, 65th and 32nd best times in his last season in the men's category. In the women's, she ranked up to 5th, 1st and 8th respectively.
So she wasn't 420th before. That's made up. And she isn't ranked #1 overall but just in one event at one competition.

When Lia first started swimming as Lia, her times were slower. But she has worked hard to improve. So IMO these times aren't because she has some secret advantage but because she is putting in the work.

The way it works IME is that people are okay with letting transgendered people participate in public life as long as they don't win. Once they win, it's "the sky is falling." What exactly is fair about that?
 

Asli

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Also, the phrase "biological women" is a dogwhistle. You give yourself away when you say it.
No, I didn't give myself away, I said it on purpose. Biological sex exists. Lia and I have the same gender, but not the same sex. I was born with female sexual organs. Sex is biological. This takes nothing away from her identity.

I respect everyone's gender identity, their right to call themselves and be called whatever they want. In return, nobody can tell me not to call myself a woman. This word is my whole history, good, great, bad and awful. My biological sex has been the reason for a lot of hardship and pain (as well as pleasure) and calling myself a woman is the only way I can express this correctly. It means everything to me.

Everyone else can do as they like, however they feel.

I have written this from the bottom of my heart without any agenda, so please take it that way.
 

Aussie Willy

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I think people forget athletes like Caster Semenya who was banned from competing as woman (she is intersex) because her testosterone was deemed above the acceptable level for female competition. Not her fault but she is unable to compete now.
 

her grace

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I think people forget athletes like Caster Semenya who was banned from competing as woman (she is intersex) because her testosterone was deemed above the acceptable level for female competition. Not her fault but she is unable to compete now.
Is she allowed to compete in the men’s division?
 

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