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Various sporting events are divided into men's and women's categories for good reason: male athletes enjoy a significant advantage in nearly every contest of physical strength, speed or endurance. The transgender movement that seeks to classify gender and/or sex as an identity that be simply asserted or changed at-will now threatens completely to destroy women's sports.
One by one, women's records are being broken and competitions dominated by an influx of transgendered athletes who were born male but are now allowed to compete as women. Handball, cycling, MMA, Crossfit, weight lifting, wrestling and sprinting are just a few of the latest sports that have had their women and girl competitors pushed aside by men and boys who decided that they now identify as women and want to compete as such.
Despite the trend toward seeing gender as a social construct and biological sex just another lifestyle choice, the truth is far different. According to Dr. Paul Hruz, an associate professor of pediatrics, endocrinology, and diabetes, athletes who were born male and later try to change their sex through testosterone lowering medical procedures can never truly compete as female athletes. These biological males who face women in competition are what he calls "feminized males rather than true females."
He went on to explain that modifying adult hormone levels is insufficient to level the playing field, "It's really important to know that whereas hormones play a role in athletic performance, by giving a male estrogen and suppressing their normal testosterone, there are many aspects of fundamental biology that don't change."
Olympic rules allow for an athlete to compete as a female if their testosterone levels have remained below a certain threshold for the year prior to the competition, despite the clear advantages imparted by prior years of masculine muscle, lung, and bone development. Dr. Hruz called into question this philosophy that bases gender solely on short term hormone levels, and the results in athletic competition now support the concerns he is raising.
The trendy new sport of Crossfit will likely chose to tackle this issue in a way similar to the International Olympic Committee, by looking at a year-long history of hormone levels. Previously, athletes were required to compete as the sex of their birth.
Clearly the previous system was imperfect as well, because under the old rules, a transgender athlete who was born female but who took testosterone injections that increased her muscle mass, endurance to male-like levels would have been required to compete as a woman.
Crossfit founder Greg Glassman issued a statement pledging his full support for transgender athletes, "CrossFit believes in the potential, capacity, and dignity of every athlete. We are proud of our LGBT community, including our transgender athletes, and we want you here with us."
As a study in unintended (or not) consequences, in a few short years the women's division of the Crossfit games may be essentially the "transgender division", dominated by feminized males who easily out-compete the women of Crossfit.
The world of cycling saw a round of controversy recently in the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) Masters Track Cycling World Championships when philosophy professor Rachel McKinnon took first place in the women's 35-39 age bracket despite being biologically male.
McKinnon, "identifies as a woman" despite his obviously masculine build and an ugly Twitter feud followed the race in which McKinnon referred to other racers as "transphobic bigots" for not accepting this win. McKinnon goes so far as to deny entirely the performance advantages of male athletes.
To end the controversy, silver medalist Carolien van Herrikhuyzen apologized publicly for openly questioning the fairness of allowing biological males who feel like women to compete alongside actual women. Instead, she pledged to work behind the scenes for a rule change in future cycling competitions.
Youth sprinting is in a similar predicament with male high school students now competing as girls and, as a result, sweeping the top spots in the 100- and 200-meter dash, along with setting new "girls" records. In Connecticut, Terry Miller dominated both the 100- and 200-meter dash with records in both events during a June 4th State Competition. Miller competed as a boy during the winter track season but now identifies as a girl, so is allowed to run against other girls.
The second place finisher, Andraya Yearwood, couldn't complain too much though because she too was born and grew up as a boy. Yearwood took first in the previous year's Class M meet in both the 100- and 200-meter races. Several parents have already started petitions to have the rules amended to prohibit such unfair competition, but Connecticut is far from the only state seeing boys now dominate girls track and wrestling.
In the world of weight lifting, the difference between men and women could hardly be clearer. This didn't stop New Zealand lifter Laurel Hubbard, who previously competed as a man, to decide to become a woman and then enter the women's division.
Hubbard took the first place in the over-90kg division at the Australian International in Melbourne and at the same time set new women's national records in both the snatch and the clean & jerk. Again, Olympic Weighting New Zealand is following the precedent set by the Olympic Games. Hubbard has plans to compete next summer Olympic games, to the likely dismay of female athletes from around the world.
One of the most notable examples of transgendered athletes enjoying an unfair advantage occurred in the MMA fight between transgendered Fallon Fox who defeated Tamikka Brents by TKO in the first round of their fight. Brents, one of the top professional female MMA fighters in her weight class, was clearly outmatched not by technique or experience but by raw power.
Fox broke an orbital bone in her skull and caused a concussion. In an interview following the fight, an injured and defeated Brents told reporters, "I've fought a lot of women and have never felt the strength that I felt in a fight as I did that night. I can't answer whether it's because [he] was born a man or not, because I'm not a doctor. I can only say, I've never felt so overpowered ever in my life, and I am an abnormally strong female in my own right."
Apart from the power of strikes that have the capacity to literally break bones, the difference in grip strength in grappling is another considerable advantage. As Brents explained, "His grip was different. I could usually move around in the clinch against...females but couldn't move at all in Fox's clinch."
The rise of transgenderism could very well signal the fall of female sports competitions as biological males use their superior size, speed, strength and bone structure to outmatch naturally disadvantaged women. In an ironic turn of political correctness gone awry, divisions within sports that were mean to level competition, dividing men from women, are instead manipulated now to shut women out of competition.
For all the women who have dreams of excelling on the field, court, track or in the ring, those aspirations must now include besting not just women but also men in their sports.