OPINION: So long, women’s sports

By Garrett Kessler and Chris Rysz

On his first day in office, President Biden signed the “Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation” which will ultimately allow biologically born males to compete in women’s sports. 

In this executive order, President Biden calls for “equal treatment under the law,” for all people, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation. This is without a doubt a great thing for this country, but there is just one issue that comes up and that is transgender females invading womens’ high school and college sports. This has been happening in several states and to no one’s surprise, the transgender females are dominating. 

Believe us, every human is equal no matter their gender, religion or race, but there is a reason that women’s and men’s sports are separate. It is commonly known that men have physical advantages when it comes to sports. According to a December 2018 article from SportsRec (a publication of doctors and nurses), men have a larger proportion of Type 2 muscle fibers which allow for higher power, strength and speed. In addition, testosterone, a male hormone, increases red blood cell production which gives men an advantage aerobically due to red blood cells’ ability to absorb oxygen. 

One story that circulated in 2019 was that of high school juniors Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood who dominated girls’ track and field in Connecticut. They placed first and second in the Connecticut Indoor Track Championships. This has outraged many female high school athletes who realized that their competition had already won the race even before it started. During Miller and Yearwood’s sophomore year, they were brought on “Good Morning America” for an interview and Miller put shame towards the tens of thousands of female high school athletes. Miller argued that girls should just work harder, rather than complain about their so-called ‘disadvantages’. However, according to work.chron.com, male athletes exhibit a higher ratio of muscle mass to body weight than women, which gifts men with greater acceleration and speed. 

“This explains why female speed records in running and swimming are consistently 10 percent slower than men’s, and why, on average, they have two thirds of the strength of men,” Latham said.

Connecticut is one out of a handful of states in the country that allows high school athletes to participate in sports based on their gender identity, without any hormone therapy or surgery, rather than their sex that is on their birth certificate. This would ultimately allow any biological male to simply decide to identify as female and dominate in girls’ basketball or soccer. I, Garrett, am certainly intrigued by this rule. I play high school golf in the boys’ division, but if I lived in Connecticut I could play in the girls’ division and hit the ball about 100 yards past my competitors. Now that can’t be fair, can it? It is completely fair because the girls would just have to “work harder” just like Terry Miller said. 

While the sports mentioned above are all non-contact sports it is important to think about those sports that do involve physical contact. While it is not a high school or college sport, there have been transgender athletes in the MMA who made headlines because of how badly they beat their opponents. Perhaps the most notable was Fallon Fox who was the first openly transgender athlete to compete in the MMA in 2013. While there isn’t a problem with her doing that, there is a problem when she cracked the orbital bone of the skull of Tamikka Brents in a 2014 fight. In fact, her first three MMA fights had to be stopped in the first round because of how damaging she was. We understand that many MMA fighters have shown this level of dominance, but since Fox was the first transgender fighter in MMA, there’s legitimate concerns about the physical advantages of men. This could be extremely frightening for a biological female going into the octagon and knowing she might be terribly hurt within seconds. 

While our argument may be a little extreme, there is no way for both sides of the problem to benefit at the same time. Transgender athletes and allies believe transgender women should compete in women’s sports and opponents believe that they should remain in the gender division that they were at their birth. There really isn’t a policy or middle that would satisfy the needs of each side of the argument so at the end of the day, for this argument, people’s feelings will be hurt either way.