Ivana RomeroStaff Editor

Can inclusion ever reach a point of abuse? This has been the big debate concerning transgender females competing in women sports. Where identity and biology get into a clash, does identity trump biology? Should there be separate competitions? How does this affect biological women and the future of sports?

Biological men that identify as females and in the process of transitioning have started to participate in female sports ranging from wrestling, track and field, and combat sports. This change or “inclusion” has brought an outcry towards female athletes where transgender females have outperformed biological females.

Depending on sport or region, some jurisdictions require a post change or hormone replacement therapy for transgender women to compete and others just need a transgender woman to identify as female. But there is no denying the biology is different and that biology is affecting women sports and women’s ability to compete. For example, Selina Soule failed to qualify for the 55-meter track event in the New England regionals after two biological males (who are not receiving hormone replacement treatment) scored the qualifying places. Selina Soule states it is impossible to win in an unlevel playing field. Donna Lopiano, who lead Women’s Sports Foundation for 15 years, states not knowing of a woman athlete that does not want to treat trans-girls fairly but that cost of fair treatment “should not come at the cost of discriminating against a biologically-female-at birth woman.

Biological men in sports have always had different numbers compared to biological women when it comes to sports. “The physiological differences between men and women are so great that elite male and female athletes rarely compete with each other.” For example, “[m]ale athletes have a higher ratio of muscle mass to body weight, which allows for greater speed and acceleration. This explains why female speed records in running and swimming are consistently 10 percent slower than men’s, and why, on average, they have two thirds of the strength of men.”

Yet, if a transgender woman competes with biological women and are not receiving hormone replacement treatment, are not the biological women always going to be at a disadvantage? With this continuing trend, biological women will begin to lose opportunities to them. With no recognition of abuse and illegality, the biological female sports will become eradicated. Women fought hard for their right to compete in their own competitions. Inclusion in this instance is not impartial nor equal because it puts biological female athletes at a detriment. It has become an abuse of discretion when trying to be inclusive without the proper limitations in equal treatment.

When considering what can be done to fix this issue, I can only think of three proper solutions. Either we separate biology in sports, only allow transgender females who are post transition or doing hormone replacement treatment or hold a different competition for transgender individuals. Women are meant to be women and biology is what separates that from men. Equal protection runs within a bubble; let us not pop it.