Last weekend, I was had a heated discussion with a friend. The topic was parents allowing their young children to choose their gender when it came to clothing. As a parent, she questions the maturity of a child making such an important decision. My position, is the parents know the child better than anyone outside their marriage and we have to trust that they made the best decision for their child.
I’m extremely ignorant when it comes to Trans community. In the last few years, I have met Trans individuals through family members. One memorable young lady shared her journey. She was born a male to a religious family in the midwest. In her early twenties, she moved to a major city where she hoped there would be more acceptance. What she found was more isolation and ignorance, from both the heterosexual and the gay community. She relocated to Southern California and is now living in San Francisco.
Ignorance is the key word. There are many things I will never fully understand. Having said that, I believe, human beings have a right to exist. I support any parent making the difficult and controversial decision of allowing their child to wear clothing they feel comfortable in. No matter how uncomfortable it makes us feel.
The area I struggle in is sports. While I celebrate the man or woman becoming the person they believe they are. I believe a Trans Woman have a physical advantage over her opponents who was born a woman.
Last week Lia Thomas became the first openly transgender athlete to win an NCAA Division 1 National Championship in any sport, beating two Olympians. Thomas began swimming on the men’s team at the University of Pennsylvania in 2017, and during her freshman year, he was ranked as the sixth-fastest national men’s time.
Thomas began transitioning using hormone replacement therapy in May 2019, and came out as a trans woman. She was required to swim for the men’s team in the 2019–2020 academic year as a junior while undergoing hormone therapy and then swam on the women’s team in 2021. She lost muscle mass and strength through testosterone suppression and hormone replacement therapy. Her time for the 500 freestyle is over 15 seconds slower than her personal bests before medically transitioning.
There are several groups worldwide who are against Trans athlete’s, team mates Erica Sullivan and Brooke Forde have publicly supported Lia Thomas.
As a person of color, I understand ignorance first hand and there are major hurdles for Trans individual based on this ignorance. Many states require Transgender individuals to use the restroom of their genders identity. Trans people aren’t protected by federal laws and it will be years before acceptance.
While I support Transgender individual and do not support Trans Athletes in women’s sports. A males physique is different than a woman’s. It is more often than not, stronger. A Trans woman born with the physique of a man, has an unfair advantage over women. In a world where everything should be fair, this isn’t.