Males competing against girls isn’t harmless | WORLD
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Males competing against girls isn’t harmless

The ACLU abandons women by defending men in women’s sports

Lia Thomas celebrates his victory in the 200-yard freestyle final at the Ivy League Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships on Feb. 18, 2022 in Cambridge, Mass. Associated Press/Photo by Mary Schwalm

Males competing against girls isn’t harmless
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Women around the world are making gains far beyond women in the United States, and, no, I’m not talking about the Women’s World Cup. Global athletic associations are recognizing that males in women’s sports erase any semblance of safety and fairness, from cycling, to rowing, to rugby, and more.

And now new details related to an American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit in West Virginia demonstrate even further that claims that there’s “nothing to see here” are just calls for us to turn a blind eye to the obvious dangers of putting males in female sport.

Activists across the United States try to normalize situations like male swimmer Lia Thomas changing in women’s locker rooms with survivors of sexual abuse and overtaking female competitors in swim meets, all while those who object are threatened by violent mobs for speaking out.

This shouldn’t concern us, they say. These athletes just want to compete. There aren’t a lot of men in women’s sports in the first place, so why should it matter?

Male athletes surpassing women in women’s sports is hardly a new concern. In Connecticut, two males won 15 women’s track championship titles between 2017 and 2019—titles that were once held by nine different girls. A male runner from the University of Montana won the 2020 NCAA Big Sky Conference Championship in the women’s mile, and, in one year, pushed hundreds of women down in cross-country race rankings. These women trained countless hours to vie for a top spot, but a few men with natural advantages unfairly skewed the results.

Girls in West Virginia are in for many years of these same kinds of results if the ACLU gets its way. This spring, the ACLU’s male client in that state defeated more than 100 girls in a West Virginia girls track-and-field competition and pushed two girls out of spots at the 2023 conference championship. He is only 13 years old.

Affirming gender dysphoria feeds lies about our God-given bodies, and as we see in these cases, elevates one class of people above another.

West Virginia tried to stop this. It passed a law to protect athletic opportunities for female athletes, attempting to protect girls across the state from the rising inequities they saw happening in other states. The ACLU, however, sued to prevent the law from going into effect. And although a trial court upheld the law, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit granted a motion that allows the young man to compete on a girls’ team while the case moves forward.

The ACLU falsely claimed that the male’s presence on girls’ teams “will harm no one,” and that he “regularly finishes near the back of the pack.” Tell that to the more than 100 girls he repeatedly displaced. Against all evidence coming in from overseas, and all the evidence coming out of West Virginia, the 4th Circuit accepted the ACLU’s claim, and now girls in West Virginia are paying the price. Alliance Defending Freedom, where I serve as senior counsel, asked the court to dissolve this injunction before more girls are harmed. It declined.

What does all of this mean for the Church? Some might argue that preventing men from competing in women’s sports further ostracizes an already vulnerable class of people struggling with their bodies. Aren’t we supposed to care for the least of these, and isn’t it caring to show love and acceptance?

But is it really caring if we lie? Tanner Cross nearly lost his job as a physical education teacher because his biblical beliefs dictated that he not lie to students about their so-called “gender identity.” Another teacher, Peter Vlaming, did lose his job for similar beliefs. Affirming gender dysphoria feeds lies about our God-given bodies, and as we see in these cases, elevates one class of people above another.

This stands in direct contrast to the belief that we are image-bearers of God. Each one of these precious individuals who struggles with his or her sex deserves every bit of dignity and respect … as do the female athletes who are unfairly being displaced as a result of radical activists pushing gender ideology. By upholding truth, we truly take a stand for the dignity of all people—men and women alike.

Christiana Kiefer

Christiana Kiefer is senior counsel at Alliance Defending Freedom.

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