Dame Kelly Holmes, Paula Radcliffe and Sharron Davies to write to IOC over transgender athletes

Discussion in 'Sports' started by jolldan, Mar 21, 2019.

  1. jolldan Registered

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    Dame Kelly Holmes, Paula Radcliffe and Sharron Davies to write to IOC over transgender athletes
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    Dame Kelly Holmes, Paula Radcliffe and Sharron Davies say they are going to write to the International Olympic Committee asking for more research on the "residual benefits" of being a transgender athlete.

    Under IOC guidelines, athletes who have transitioned from male to female are required to have kept their levels of testosterone - a hormone that increases muscle mass - below a certain level for at least 12 months.

    Former swimmer Davies said: "We all need a safe and fair place to compete."

    The 1980 Olympic silver medallist said the private letter had gained support from "loads" of elite athletes but asked for more to back her, Radcliffe and ex-athlete Holmes, who won 800m and 1500m gold at the 2004 Olympics.

    Marathon world record holder Radcliffe has said elite sport could be "manipulated" and also questioned whether it was "fair for a biological man to compete alongside women".

    There has been widespread debate recently about the fairness of transgender women competing in female sport. Transgender cyclist Rachel McKinnon, an age-group world champion, accused tennis' 18-time Grand Slam singles champion Martina Navratilova of being a "transphobe" for suggesting that the participation of transgender women in women's sport could be equivalent to "cheating".

    Navratilova later apologised for the use of the word "cheat".

    Radcliffe told BBC Sport earlier this month that more research is needed to establish an appropriate level of testosterone in transgender women in order to create fair competition.

    She also called for a halt to the "attacking and bullying" which she believes has existed between groups and individuals with contrasting views.

    According to IOC guidelines, set in 2015, the current level of testosterone allowed for athletes is at 10 nanomoles per litre.

    Athletes who have transitioned from female to male can compete without restrictions.

    The IOC said it expected to publish updated guidelines after a lengthy consultation with various stakeholders. They include the IOC medical and scientific commission, medical, scientific, human rights and legal experts, plus international federations and national governing bodies.

    It added: "It is the international federations' remit to decide eligibility rules on a sport, both for hyperandrogenism and transgender."
     
  2. jolldan Registered

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    My bad I meant to put this in the sport section if one of the mods could move it that would be appreciated.
     
  3. Batmannerism Super-unknown

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    Wow. Controversial topic.

    IMO trans athletes should have a separate category. Unless you can prove to me that trans men to women have no biological advantage due to their originally being men then I believe it's unfair for women to have to compete against them in the majority of sports.

    I agree with Navratilova on this one.
     
    #3 Batmannerism, Mar 22, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2019
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  4. jolldan Registered

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    Yeah its one of those that I think gets a lot of angry reactions from the get go but none of these women are saying anything detrimental about trans-women, just trying to start a conversation about fairness.

    Some of the advantages that come with just having gone through puberty are irreversible. I think at school or amateur level you can maybe make a case for it but what I say to everyone is imagine if your daughter, sister or whatever lost out on a place on the Olympic team, world championship team or even just a scholarship that's she's been training for her whole life because she was beaten out by a trans athlete.
     
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  5. DarthSkywalker May the Force Be With You

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    I feel like this is a delicate and controversial, but not necessarily complicated situation. The simple fact is the reason there are both men and women's sports, is that at the top tier, men have a large physical advantage. Because of that if transgender athletes want to compete, I can understand restrictions for those competing in women's sports. And if such things did not make a difference, which I have seen argued, I don't see why there would be any complaint about such restrictions.
     
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  6. Batmannerism Super-unknown

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    Yup. As far as I understand a human who was born male has a biological advantage in certain sports over one who was born biologically female. It's more than just testosterone, it's bone and muscle structure.

    Unless someone's got science to say otherwise IMO it's just not fair. Imagine seeing a woman Olympic boxer or wrestler defeated by a trans athlete? That's just wrong. - it's ironic that by trying to create fairness and equality by recognising trans rights that we create unfairness at the same time. Ah life is complex.
     
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  7. DarthSkywalker May the Force Be With You

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    Just so I am clear. I think trans men and women should both be allowed to compete in the sport they identify with. Simply that trans women having certain restrictions is a fair compromise imo.
     
  8. jolldan Registered

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    If you want a highlight of that go and search Fallon Fox. This transwoman is currently 5-1 MMA fighter and I do not say this as a hater more as someone who has watched a hell of a lot of MMA, that she is a terrible fighter. (Her only loss came to a very good female fighter in Ashlee Evans-Smith who went on to the UFC after and I have seen this used as reasoning why trans athletes should compete because the female athlete still won. My rebuttal is always listen if you put me in a MMA fight with Amanda Nunes I wouldn't fancy my chances but if you put her in there with Max Holloway im picking Max every time.)

    Here is a quote from her opponent in her final fight Tamikka Brents who like her was at a similar level.

    Brents suffered a concussion, an orbital bone fracture, and seven staples to the head in the 1st round. After her loss, Brents took to social media to convey her thoughts on the experience of fighting Fox: "I've fought a lot of women and have never felt the strength that I felt in a fight as I did that night. I can't answer whether it's because she was born a man or not because I'm not a doctor. I can only say, I've never felt so overpowered ever in my life and I am an abnormally strong female in my own right," she stated.
     
  9. Batmannerism Super-unknown

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    Dude. I would not fight Amanda Nunes, she would mess me up big time !
     
  10. Batmannerism Super-unknown

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    Okay respect your view, but there are circumstances in which restrictions don't make competition fair - contact sports and those which depend on explosive power being examples - what restriction can you put on a trans boxer ? Make her fight with one hand behind her back - equally, a woman who transitions to male is going to get hurt very badly by her male opponents. Brazilian jujitsu would be a possible exception if the female fighter is much more skillful - again, why I wouldn't want to fight Amanda Nunes.

    Again, show me some science and I'll reconsider but until then I'm unconvinced. Agree to disagree I guess.
     
  11. jolldan Registered

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    Haha same here especially after seeing what she did to Cyborg.

    Im just saying I see the fact that Fallon Fox was defeated by a woman & Germaine De Randamie knocked out a man in a kickboxing fight but these are the exceptions (especially when you consider the guy who Germaine fought was Belgian actor who'd never fought previously and only trained for 3 months for the fight)
     
  12. Batmannerism Super-unknown

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    There are going to be exceptions to every rule, particularly in mismatch contests, but when you're talking about Olympic level, where all athletes are elite level and the slightest advantage counts then trans competing creates unfairness.
     
  13. DarthSkywalker May the Force Be With You

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    There is inherent unfairness do to genetics in the first place. None of us come off the assembly line the same.
     
  14. DeadPresident Registered

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    Except the difference at the elite level between men is substantially smaller on aggregate than the aggregate difference at the elite level between men and women.

    An athlete that has gone through puberty as a biological male will benefit from muscle and other development that will be substantially higher than the average female's, that's just biological fact. Allowing someone who has received that 'benefit' to compete against people who haven't is illogical.

    It's basically just another version of the whole privilege discussion.
     
  15. DarthSkywalker May the Force Be With You

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    Not really. If it was that big of an advantage at the top level, transgender athletes would dominate women's sport. They don't. Top level athletes are not average women or men. This is before we get into what transition does to the body. Also in skill based athletic competition, an athletic disadvantage is all but lost in the talent gap.
     
  16. jolldan Registered

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    I have seen this used before of course were all gonna vary in height, size and weight. Im 6ft 3 and usually one of tallest guys in the room but you put me in an NBA locker room i'd look like a dang toddler lol.

    I would put it down to advantages you gained as a man that even though now transitioning you maintain over a woman like physical height, arm & leg reach, broadness of shoulders and bigger and denser bones to names a few.

    The Williams sisters are example I like to use, there dominance in tennis is so well known. Both sisters are known well known for their big serves with Serena hitting 128.6mph and Venus hitting 129mph. Now as recognized by the WTA they are the second and third hardest serves ever in women's tennis.

    Now Andy Murray isn't even in the top 32 serves of all time and his record is 141mph.
     
  17. DeadPresident Registered

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    Except transgender athletes aren’t competing in the division they don’t biologically belong to in big enough numbers to make the claim that it’s a large enough problem.

    But, if you extrapolate the anecdotal evidence we have then it would suggest that transgender women born as biological men will have a serious advantage over biological women.

    We’ve had an extensive discussion in my country because of Caster Semenya, who’s an intersex athlete - have a look at how she’s dominated women’s competition and tell me biology plays second fiddle to skill.
     
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  18. DarthSkywalker May the Force Be With You

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    Caster runs. It isn't a skill based sport, which is exactly why I mentioned skill based sports. Though Caster's situation is a strong example of the issue here. She was simply born and trained her ass off to be a top level athlete. What is the issue?

    If transgender athletes are not competing enough to in anyway push the needle on the sport, what is the issue exactly?
     
  19. DeadPresident Registered

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    But what sport depends so much on skill at a competitive level that biology is rendered irrelevant…?

    Well if we're looking at current stats it's going to grow. I know people want to postulate that social factors have no effect on the prevalence of transgender individuals but the facts seem to point to a biology+social environment interaction so this will become more prominent.

    And it's easy for you to say it's not happening enough to be a problem when you're not the competitor missing out on a gold because of someone with an unfair advantage. Work towards something for your whole life and be kept away from it because of an innate and unfair advantage another person has then we'll talk again about whether or not it's not an issue.
     
  20. DarthSkywalker May the Force Be With You

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    All sports have a dependence of biology. But the very nature of transition changes the make of the one who transitions. The WNBA, women's international soccer, and well all Olympic level competitions are not dominated by transgender athletes.

    One of the big issues with this conversation is the idea that if one transitions from a male to a female, they have all the inherent traits to be a top athlete, because they grew up a male. That just doesn't hold water.

    Two things.

    1. Losing out to a perceived "innate and unfair advantage" is exactly how sports work. There are people born too short, too slow, to whatever to be a pro athlete. It is the vast majority of the population really.

    2. What about the person who has worked their entire life to win an Olympic gold, but also is transgender. Do their hopes and dreams not matter because they are transgender? Are they somehow lesser?
     
  21. DeadPresident Registered

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    Let's see a study where 5 male-to-female transgender athletes compete across all Olympic events against 5 women, and vice versa, and see what the findings say. Like I said before we don't have enough data but the anecdotal evidence suggests male-to-female athletes will hold significant advantage.

    What…? Muscle and bone density and the innate benefits of higher testosterone, all things associated with male biology, isn't an inherently beneficial trait? Even if someone transitions and has every chemical aid to mimic the biology of a woman it doesn't neutralize the X decades of male biology.

    I honestly don't understand this line.

    The bold is nearly approaching a straw man…The difference in male and female biology is well documented, and the range within which it differs between men and women exclusively is substantially smaller than the range with which it differs between men and women, there's nothing to be gained debating on that point.

    RE #2, this is a simple case of utilitarianism in my mind - is it correct to disadvantage every other athlete to accommodate one, or two disadvantage only a small number to the benefit of the majority? I don't know the answer, but I think allowing unfair benefit to one person who ends up dominating (look at Caster Semenya, who I believe should be allowed to compete because she didn't control any factors giving her an advantage) a sport seems a little odd.

    I mean at that point why control any substances any athlete wants to use to gain an advantage? If the rest of the herd wants to catch up why shouldn't they?
     
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  22. DarthSkywalker May the Force Be With You

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    How many transgender athletes have won gold medals at the Olympics? How many transgender athletes have won a major championship in sports outside of the Olympics?

    Have you read the laws on what it takes for a transgender athlete to complete among their gender according to the IOC?

    They I ask. Why is no women's sport dominated by a transgender athlete? Also would you say Serena Williams and LeBron James have more in common then say LeBron James and Donald Trump in terms of athletics?

    You are framing it as an athlete seeking an advantage, which I think we all agree making the decision to transition from one gender to the other is clearly not.
     
  23. Batmannerism Super-unknown

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    that's more


    I agree with most of the above. Caster Semenya looks to be different situation from trans athletes - and while she may have a condition that grants her an advantage she's biologically been a woman from birth ( correct me if I'm wrong).

    My position remains " show me the science" if someone can prove that a person born male has no biological advantage in a sport when competing against women who were born women then I'm all for it.

    As to
    With respect that logic has its limitations because if you follow it then it negates the need for the Paralympics and special Olympics - if innate characteristics from birth are simply how sports works.

    That is a good question. What about non trans athletes who work their entire life to win Olympic gold and lose to a trans competitor ? What about their hopes and dreams ?

    While I support the rights of trans athletes to compete it has to be in a way that doesn't unfairly disadvantage non trans athletes.

    What about the inverse situation ? How many trans men ( apologies if I have the term wrong) who began life as women are competing in sports against male competitors? How many are succeeding?
     
  24. jolldan Registered

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    'Actually a male': Transgender weightlifter stripped of world records
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    A transgender weightlifter has been stripped of her controversial world records after a stunning ruling from the RAW Powerlifting Federation.

    Mary Gregory sparked controversy earlier in May after claiming on Instagram that she’d won ‘nine out of nine’ events, which included setting a new Masters world squat record, open world bench record, Masters world deadlift record and Masters world total record.

    “What a day, 9 for 9! Masters world squat record, open world bench record, masters world record, and masters world total record! Still processing, full meet recap to come a bit later but I do want to thank a few people,” she wrote.

    However, RAW Powerlifting Federation have now decided to take the titles off the American athlete, in a decision that could have huge ramifications for transgender athletes.

    The president of the Federation, Paul Bossi, told Mail Online that Gregory could not have been considered a female when she broke the records.

    “It was revealed that this female lifter was actually a male in the process of becoming a Transgender female,” Bossi said.

    “Our rules, and the basis of separating genders for competition, are based on physiological classification rather than identification.

    On the basis of all information presented to the Board of Directors for this particular case, the conclusion made, is that the correct physiological classification is male.

    Urine test determines weightlifter’s fate

    Gregory claims that the Federation’s decision came after one of the insistence that one of their officials was present when she was made to undergo a urine test.

    “I did my business while somebody watched me sitting on the toilet,” Gregory told Outsports.

    “So that’s where that statement comes from, because I’m sure she told them, ‘Hey! This girl’s got a penis!'”
     
  25. Dark Raven The Gal from Themyscira

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    If Donald Trump did transition, he's not going to go into sports suddenly. Not every transgender man to woman is suddenly going to decide to become an athlete if they were never athletically inclined in the first place. If you had a man who never enjoyed playing sports to begin with, he's not going to suddenly go into sports as a woman and hope to compete at the top level.

    We're talking about people who were probably sporty and athletically inclined at the start, but questioned their identity and felt they were more a woman than a man. The only people who are going to realistically compete in sports are those who had that aptitude to begin with, and an interest in pursuing it as a career.

    While he may not be directly seeking an advantage (like say, someone who realises he can't compete in one sport so decides to compete in a different sport where he can excel), he would nevertheless still have an advantage, because he would've been into sports in the first place. If he weren't into sports, then he wouldn't even be in this field to begin with, but would become something else like a fashion consultant or musician or lawyer - careers that don't rely on a physical advantage. It's never going to be the case that a man who was a lawyer who transitions is suddenly going to decide he's going to compete as a tennis player just because now he'll have the male biological advantages.

    The more likely scenario is if say, there is a junior male tennis player who has been training and developing in tennis, and has maybe even competed. However, he feels that he should be a woman because he feels that is his true identity and decides to transition. It's not that he decides that he can't hope to compete against other guys so decides he might try his hand competing against women instead.

    So we will probably always be talking about a sports man who gains an advantage over sports women if he transitions.
     

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