(The Center Square) – At a Congressional hearing Tuesday, critics of the growth of transgender athletes in women’s sports raised questions of fairness, safety, and privacy for female athletes in college and younger who have been forced to compete against biological males.
“By allowing biological males to compete in women’s sports, we are placing our daughters in danger every time they step onto the field,” said U.S. Rep. Lisa McClain, R-Mich., who chaired the hearing, pointing to the severe injuries suffered by some young women.
In some cases, those girls have had to share locker rooms, been injured by the transgender athlete, and lost out on the first place finish to the biological male, who has a range of physical advantages from size to bone density to greater lung capacity and more.
The hearing also featured Riley Gaines, a former collegiate swimmer who tied a transgender athlete at the NCAA championship and has since become an outspoken advocate for protecting women’s sports from transgender females seeking to compete.
“Let me be perfectly clear,” Gaines said at the hearing. “A school that knowingly allows a male athlete to take a spot on a women’s team or allows a male athlete to take the field in a women’s game is denying a female student athletic opportunity. And that is sex-based discrimination, and it violates Title IX…”
Gaines has called on female athletes to boycott the competition when a biological male is participating, but said coaches, families and more need to step up to help female athletes as well. She pointed to the serious, career-ending injuries biological males have caused for some female athletes.
Gaines also shot back at U.S. Rep. Summer Lee, D-Penn., who in her opening remarks had accused those who disagreed with her at the hearing of being transphobic.
“Ranking Member Lee, if my testimony makes me transphobic, then I believe your opening monologue makes you a misogynist,” Gaines said to conclude her opening remarks.
The testimony comes as a slew of new federal rules are emerging to force schools in particular to toe the line on liberal gender and sexuality ideology, such as transgender athletes, bathrooms and more, or risk losing their federal funding.
This push has been driven largely not by new laws out of Congress, but by new interpretations and regulations from federal agencies.
McClain blasted the Biden administration, saying it is “putting leftist policies ahead of women and girls.”
The new Biden administration push has broad application across schools, and not just for sports.
For instance, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a new interpretation of Title IX, the law preventing discrimination on the basis of sex, redefining “sex” to mean gender identity and sexual orientation.
This major change directly impacts the federal program providing free and reduced lunches for poor students at school. That means schools that refuse to allow transgender students to use the bathroom of their choice, for instance, could lose funding for school lunches. This has already begun sparking at least two schools to sue the Biden administration.
This issue has become even more polarizing after high-profile cases of girls being attacked or injured by transgender students. One father in Loudoun County, Virginia, was arrested while protesting at a school board meeting after his daughter was sexually assaulted in the bathroom by a biological male identifying as a girl.
The Department of Education has proposed two rules likely coming next year using the same redefinition of sex that will require schools to comply with the liberal understanding of gender and sexuality or risk losing billions in federal funding for things like Pell grants, FAFSA, other grants and more. Specifically, students identifying as female would be allowed to play with the girls team.
Those rules, which were expected to already be finalized and may be combined into a single rule, have been delayed because of the pushback and concerns raised with the federal agency. Once they are finalized, though, schools that refuse to comply with allowing a range of transgender and sexuality requests could lose their funding.