While the media widely celebrated the inclusion of “transgender” athletes in the Tokyo Olympics this summer, other athletes raised serious concerns about the unfair advantage of biological males competing against females.
The female weightlifting competition at the Tokyo Olympics was overshadowed by the participation of the first openly transgender Olympian in their event.
While LGBTQ activists and the media enthusiastically focused on the “historic event,” the women competing against a biological male were not celebrating. When the three medalists were asked about what they thought, nearly eight seconds of awkward silence went by before USA bronze medalist Sarah Robles finally spoke into the mic: “No, thank you.”
As at least eight states in the USA have enacted laws protecting girls’ sports and over 20 others are considering similar legislation, an international debate has been unleashed.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has recently admitted that its transgender guidelines, allowing competition against the opposite biological sex, needs changing because it is not backed by science.
A number of scientific studies are showing that biological males retain a 10-50 percent advantage over biological women after puberty, and that advantage is not significantly reduced merely by suppressing testosterone.
“Advantage does not always equate winning or losing. … It is about what you are able to do that others are not,” said Linda Blade, president of Alberta Athletics, former Team Canada competitor in the heptathlon, coach, and co-author of Unsporting: How Trans Activism and Science Denial are Destroying Sport. “Hubbard’s appearance in the games opened people’s eyes to the problem.”
Even some transgender activists, like Dr. Harper (who has advised the IOC on transgender athletes), have admitted that biological males competing against biological females raises concerns about fairness. The British doctor admitted that hormone therapy may not completely “mitigate the advantages, enough” and “that of all the sports I might be concerned with, Olympic weightlifting might be near the top of the list.”
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