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Politics, Schools, Sports

Republicans pressure Biden on trans girls, women competing in high school, college sports

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There is literally just a handful of trans women in competitive high school and college sports. You wouldn’t know that from listening to your local elected Republican, who seems to think trans athletes in women’s sports is bigger than gun violence, lack of affordable healthcare and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine combined.

“Biological men and women have genetic differences – that’s just a scientific fact,” said Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares, who has joined a political push of nearly two dozen Republican states attorneys general urging the Biden administration to uphold Title IX protections for girls and women.

Another fact: biological men and trans women also have significant differences, but don’t waste your breath trying to explain that to the likes of Miyares, for whom this issue is not so much about actually protecting women’s rights, but rather is about creating a wedge issue to exploit for political gain.

The opening here is that the Biden administration, through the Department of Education, has proposed a new rule that would prohibit local school districts from issuing blanket bans on trans athletes in school sports, making such a policy a violation of Title IX.

The age of the students, the level of the fairness and the nature of the sport would be among the considerations for developing policies for trans athletic participation, according to the proposed new rule.

“The federal government is once again overstepping Congress and the individual states by forcing every public school to allow biological boys to play on the girls’ teams, threatening the future of women’s sports and disregarding the privacy and safety of teenage girls,” Miyares said.

Twenty states currently have laws in place that bar students from participating in sports corresponding with how they identify.

You can guess the voting patterns in these 20 states.

Virginia isn’t among them. Not yet.

Their approach to dealing with trans athletes seems to be a solution in search of a problem. There are no hard data on how many trans girls and women are participating in women’s sports, but one estimate has pegged the number at the college level at 50 – five-zero – among the more than 200,000 spots on women’s sports teams.

Somebody might want to tell that to Miyares and his Republican AG colleagues, who seem to think 50 means more like 50 percent.

The AGs have been inundating the DOE with letters spelling out their opposition to the proposed rule, arguing that it ignores basic considerations of privacy and fairness.

“Many of those biological differences often lead to men being taller, stronger, and faster, therefore putting them at an athletic advantage,” Miyares said. “That’s exactly why we have women’s sports, and why Title IX exists – to create an environment where our female athletes can thrive, be competitive, and be celebrated.”

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page, or subscribe to his Street Knowledge podcast. Email Chris at [email protected].