- The Washington Times
Thursday, June 23, 2022

OPINION:

The Switzerland-based Federation Internationale de Natation, the international governing body for swimming competitions, this week finally stood up for female swimmers, issuing new rules that will protect them from any longer having to compete against transgender “women” (aka biological men).

To which we say, “Vive la difference.” Also, “Better late than never.”


The decision by the International Swimming Federation was approved Sunday and took effect Monday. While welcome (albeit overdue), it shouldn’t have required a 24-page document to spell out newly promulgated rules on who can — or, more specifically, who cannot — participate in girls’ and women’s water sports competitions.

The swimming federation announced that henceforth it will allow biologically male swimmers to compete in events intended for females only if they haven’t yet experienced male puberty or if they had puberty suppressed before age 12.

It surely is no coincidence that this much-needed rules change is a direct result of University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia (born Will) Thomas, a biological male who “identifies” as a woman, becoming the first transgender NCAA champion in women’s Division I history after winning the women’s 500-yard freestyle on March 17.

A few days later, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis spoke for a lot of Americans — likely, most — when in a proclamation he offered recognition instead to the runner-up, a young Florida woman, who would have won that race had Thomas not been permitted to participate.

“By allowing men to compete in women’s sports, the NCAA is destroying opportunities for women, making a mockery of its championships, and perpetuating a fraud,” Mr. DeSantis tweeted on March 22. “In Florida, we reject these lies and recognize Sarasota’s Emma Weyant as the best women’s swimmer in the 500y freestyle.”

Ms. Weyant is far from the only real (i.e., XX chromosome) female athlete who has been deprived of a win by a transgender “woman,” however. Research by the WashingtonStand.com turned up “at least 28 separate girls’ and women’s sports titles that have been won by biological males (or have included biological men as part of a winning women’s team) in the last 19 years.”

In addition to swimming, those athletic competitions have included cycling, track and field, volleyball, golf and weightlifting.

The Washington Stand’s list further noted: “These titles do not include the multiple second place, third place, and other finishing spots in women’s events awarded to biological males that would have been won by biological females had the events been for biological females only.”

The swimming federation’s vote to acknowledge the obvious inherent unfairness of biological men competing against women and to change the rules accordingly wasn’t even close. Some 71.5% of FINA members approved the decision restricting — all but eliminating — the participation of biological men in girls’ and women’s water sports competitions — not only swimming but also diving and water polo.

The swimming federation’s vote effectively rejects the far left’s chromosomal “science denial” and the transgender lobby’s facially farcical claim that there’s “no scientific evidence” that transgender “women” have significant physiological advantages in athletic competition — testosterone suppression notwithstanding.

Not surprisingly, transgender activist group Athlete Ally decried FINA’s entirely sensible move as “discriminatory, harmful, [and] unscientific.”

“If we truly want to protect women’s sports,” it tweeted, standing logic on its head, “we must include all women.”

That’s the caterwauling you would expect from a vanishingly small — but disproportionately influential — special interest, one that isn’t used to not getting its way through the use of bullying tactics.

To the contrary, the various athletics associations and federations that govern those other sports that transgender “women” have invaded to the detriment of real females should impose restrictions similar to those of the International Swimming Federation. So should the International Olympic Committee.

It’s the right — and fair — thing to do.


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