Keep Boys and Girls Separated


Rich Von Biberstein, Icon Sportswire

Penn swimmer, who is a biological man, holds a trophy after winning the 500m freestyle event.

A growing controversy has arisen in the past few years, as athletes from the opposite sex have attempted to participate in sports because of their “sexual identity.” Some see it as an unfair advantage, but others see it as inclusive for those who want to continue playing the sport they love.

In recent years, this concept of “transitioning athletes” has made a big impact not only at the high school level, but also at the collegiate level, one being a student at the University of Montana.

During the 2019-2020 season, Jonathan Eastwood, an accomplished male distance runner, began competing for the women’s team after a year of hormone therapy, abiding by NCAA rules. Not surprisingly, he won the women’s mile race and crushed the competition, leaving the closest competitor behind by a whopping 4.5 seconds and missing the women’s world record by only 0.12 seconds.

The event soon gained traction from the public and proposed the question, “Is this fair to the women on the other teams?” The answer is absolutely not.

This topic has gone under lots of investigation recently, and the NCAA has responded to it in a way that does not defend women’s athletics. The current rule states that “a trans female (Male to Female) student-athlete being treated with testosterone suppression medication for Gender Identity Disorder or gender dysphoria and/or Transsexualism, for the purposes of NCAA competition may continue to compete on a men’s team but may not compete on a women’s team without changing it to a mixed team status until completing one calendar year of testosterone suppression treatment.”

The International Federation of Sports Medicine recently found that no matter the amount of surgery or “hormone therapy” done by a person, strength advantages compared to women persist even after three years of hormone therapy. This leaves the NCAA rule unjust, and unfair to the real women who have been training their entire lives only to be crushed by a man simply because of their somatic build-up.

On February 25, 2021, President Joe Biden signed an executive order which threatened to pull federal funding from schools unless they allowed transgender women to compete on girl’s sports teams. The House passed a bill that would write this policy permanently into law (USA Today).

I, along with many other sports connoisseurs, believe that this is insulting to the women who go to extreme lengths to train only to lose to a biological man. As this becomes more popular and encouraged by President Biden’s extreme measures, many female athletes may quit their sports out of discouragement or lose scholarships to colleges, all due to the ‘inclusion” that is felt necessary.

Even futher, Connecticut High school track runner, Selina Soule, lost the opportunity to compete for a spot at the New England Regional Championships in the 55-meter dash after missing the qualifications by one spot, falling behind two male athletes. As a result, Soule was not able to compete in front of college scouts and gain the attention necessary to run track in college.

“It’s very frustrating and heartbreaking when us girls are at the start of the race and we already know that these athletes are going to come out and win no matter how hard you try, said Soule. “They took away the spots of deserving girls, athletes … me being included.”

This growing problem has affected more athletes than Selena. Chelsea Mitchell, a talented high school runner from Connecticut, lost four state championship titles to male athletes.

For the same reasons that there are age divisions in any sport, there should also be divisions by sex, regardless of how many treatments or procedures have been done. An eighteen-year-old boy is understandably not allowed to compete in a ten-year-old baseball game because his body is far more advanced than every player on the field. In the same way that the grown man is not able to identify as a child, a male should not be able to identify as a woman and compete in a sport where everyone else is inherently handicapped compared to him.

Many people would like to see a different way of incorporating these men into various sports by possibly creating separate heats, handicapping the results, or adding different divisions. A separate, more traditional form, could be the athletes showing their birth certificate, or a form of any legal document with their sex on it.