Young Swimmers Speak Out about Their Concerns Regarding Transgender Athlete Put On Their Team without Their Knowledge

By Emma Williams

An elite group of female swimmers at Roanoke College, Virginia, revealed the trauma they’d suffered after a transgender athlete had joined their team without consultation. The Virginia swimmers said they feel they have been “abandoned by their coach, their university, and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).”

Biological Advantage

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In a video shared online, the three young women swimmers speak out against the NCAA and USA Swimming for failing to protect their sport. The swimmers appear visibly upset that they are being forced to compete against trans athletes with biological advantages. The women claim,” Every member of the 17-person female swim team unanimously agreed that swimming against the trans athlete — who several knew as a male, and who all team members supported as a trans woman — was unfair.”

The Swimmers Are Calling for a Ban on Trans Athletes in Women’s Sports

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The swimmers in the video call for a ban on trans athletes in women’s sports. This is a complex issue, and there is no easy answer. However, the NCAA and USA Swimming need to do more to protect the fairness of women’s sports. Co-captain Kate Pearson told the Daily Mail, “‘There are so many grown-ups around that should be making these decisions.”

Lia Thomas Backlash

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This story follows the recent backlash about transgender swimmer Lia Thomas. The swimmer at the University of Pennsylvania has faced significant backlash for competing on the women’s swim team. Some argue that she has an unfair advantage over her cisgender (non-transgender) competitors due to the physical changes she experienced during male puberty. Others argue that her participation is a form of cheating and that she is taking opportunities away from cisgender women.

Some Say the Swimmer’s Concerns Are Valid

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The swimmers’ concerns are valid for many people commenting on the video. These people believe that Trans athletes who have gone through male puberty have several physical advantages over female athletes, including greater muscle mass, bone density, and lung capacity. These advantages can give trans athletes a significant edge in competition, according to people who are critical of trans athletes competing in women’s sports.

There Is a lot of Diversity among Trans Athletes

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It is important to remember that trans athletes are just as diverse as any other group. Some trans athletes may have a significant physical advantage over female athletes, while others may not. It is also important to remember that trans athletes are people, too. They deserve to be treated with respect and dignity.

The Swimmers Claim to Be Diverse

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Sensing some resistance to their plea, the swimmers told readers, “‘We’re all on the same page. Because we have other people on the team who identify in the LGBTQ community sitting right there with us.” Their concern is not about how people want to identify but about fairness within the sport.

They Were Initially Happy for Pearson

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The concern for the women was that when the woman in question was swimming as a male, the athlete had finished ninth in the 500 freestyle in their Division 3 conference and eighth in the 100 fly. They had initially encouraged the person to transition, saying, “Yes. Do what makes you happy”.’ However, they were “flabbergasted” when their coach said that the trans swimmer would be competing against them. They claim, “Even the best female swimmer on the Roanoke team would have no shot.”

The NCAA and USA Swimming Have a Responsibility

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The NCAA and USA Swimming are responsible for protecting the fairness of women’s sports. They need to develop clear and fair policies on transgender athletes based on science and common sense. It is clear that the NCAA and USA Swimming need to develop policies that balance the need to protect the fairness of women’s sports with the need to respect the rights of trans athletes.

There Is a Lot of Love for the Trans Swimmer

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The young women are keen to stress that they “love and respect” the trans swimmer and “this is not anything personal.” Pearson wrote a letter saying, “ ‘Like We support you… But we just think it’s biologically unfair when it comes to the athletic side of things.” The person responded, “ I was suicidal; I wanted to kill myself.” The Daily Mail journalist interviewing Pearson could not believe that so much pressure was put on the young women. She said, “To put such a level of stress and responsibility on any student is unconscionable.”

Trans Athlete Ban

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The International Swimming Federation’s (FINA) decision to bar any trans athlete who has surpassed a given stage of male puberty or has lived as a biological male past age 12 from competing against biological females is controversial. Some people argue that protecting the fairness of women’s sports is necessary, while others argue that it is discriminatory and harmful to transgender athletes.

A Complex Issue

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The trauma female swimmers at Virginia’s Roanoke College have suffered after a transgender athlete joined their team without consultation is a complex issue. On the one hand, it is important to respect the rights of transgender athletes and allow them to participate in sports that align with their gender identity. On the other hand, it is also important to protect the fairness of women’s sports and ensure that all athletes have a fair chance to compete.

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