Something in me loves this mess. The progressive mob took a self-evidently absurd position that was in defiance of one of their false idols, “science,” and now that position is seriously damaging one of the main groups it supposedly supports, one that has far more stakeholders. But the mob lacks the integrity and courage to admit it was wrong. Of course it does. Extremists never admit they are wrong. If they were capable of that, they wouldn’t be extremists. As a result, these episodes cause the woke army’s goose-step to kick the marchers in the chops
Wow. This is great!
Of course, it’s not great for female athletes. What is developing, thanks to bizarre transsexual sanctification cheered on by Woke Nation, is a consensus in professional and amateur women’s sports that individuals who went through puberty as males can fairly compete with women who did not receive the benefit of male hormones. All such ex-men need to do is identify as female, and denying them an unimpeded path to domination in the women’s sport of their choice is an act of bigotry and “transphobia.”
This is, I think it is reasonable to say, counter-factual nonsense. One such ex-man who is demonstrating that it is nonsense is Lia Thomas, whom I first wrote about here. Thomas, who spent three years competing at the University of Pennsylvania a male swimmer, has generously decided to prove exactly how wrong it is to allow trans athletes to compete with biological women. Once he flipped genders, he’s been easily smashing female pool records to smithereens. A coincidence, I’m sure.
At a three-day meet in Akron, Ohio, he (sorry! she…) set meet and program records so decisively that they may never be broken. She shattered the Ivy League 500 freestyle record. She swam the nation’s best time for a woman in the 200 freestyle, breaking pool, meet, and Penn program records. In the 1650 freestyle final, Lia set another program, pool, and meet record, but in a manner that demonstrated what a farce her participation was. Second place went to Penn’s Anna Kalandadze, who finished a humiliating 38 seconds behind Thomas. That’s roughly the equivilent of a World Series game being decided by 25 runs.
Two of Thomas’s fellow (can I say that?) swimmers on the women’s team have spoken anonymously to the conservative sports publication “Outkick.” (Would ESPN or Sports Illustrated report their objections? I wonder.)
“Pretty much everyone individually has spoken to our coaches about not liking this. Our coach Mike Schnur just really likes winning. He’s like most coaches,” said one female swimmer who appears to have no name. “I think secretly everyone just knows it’s the wrong thing to do. When the whole team is together, we have to be like, ‘Oh my gosh, go Lia, that’s great, you’re amazing.’ It’s very fake.”
She continued, “On paper, if Lia Thomas gets back down to Will Thomas’ best times, those numbers are female world records. Faster than all the times Katie Ledecky went in college. Faster than any other Olympian you can think of. His times in three events are female world records.”
Her team mate anonymously added that the other swimmers on the team are angry, and even weepy about the unfairness of it all. “They feel so discouraged because no matter how much work they put in it, they’re going to lose,” she said. “Usually, they can get behind the blocks and know they out-trained all their competitors and they’re going to win and give it all they’ve got.Now they’re having to go behind the blocks knowing no matter what, they do not have the chance to win. I think that it’s really getting to everyone.”
Well and do something, you cowards. Tell the coach he can have a one man—sorry, woman–team if he wants, or he can have a women’s swim team that doesn’t depend on testosterone as a secret weapon. Tell him, and UPenn, that it’s Lia or you, and the swimmers he is clobbering in the pool need to do the same. Talking to the press anonymously while you’re smiling and cheering on the swimmer you’re complaining about is being unfair to her, too. If it’s “the wrong thing,” and it is, stand up, openly and publicly, for the right thing. That’s your duty as a member of society.
Meanwhile, feminists and advocates for women’s sports are also being weenies. Lia and her similarly not-quite-female athletes—the powerlifter, the wrestler, the cyclist and others— will kill women’s sports, the public’s interest in them, and girls’ athletic programs after women’s rights activists fought so hard to have fair opportunities for sports-loving girls. Where’s Billy Jean King? Where’s Hillary Clinton? Where’s Megan Rapinoe? It’s pretty obvious why they and others are cowering.
First, of course, the steely-eyed woke mob they have embraced in the past will turn on them and bite their heads off if they dare challenge the Holy Scriptures of Trans Worship, which Jimmy Durante would have translated as “Testosterone? What testosterone?” Second, woman’s sports advocacy has painted female athletes into a corner of their own construction. How can they credibly insist that their sports deserve the same financial rewards as men’s sports if they admit that an ex-man—and not even one who was extraordinary in her male athlete days— can easily swamp their records and achievements?
As for their dilemma, the Ethics Alarms verdict is “Too damn bad!” and “Live by a lie, die by a lie.” If female sports are to survive, feminists, activists and female athletes have to admit reality and vigorously protest against all the Lias, whatever the sport. As with free speech and thought in the age of The Great Stupid, weenies pose an existential threat to our cultural values with their cowardice.
“Even without Lia, we had the chance to win the Ivy League this year, which is a huge deal for us,” one of Outkick’s sources said, “We train every single day and give up so much for this sport. And I love swimming. I do it because I love it. It’s been a part of my life forever, and this is a slap in the face that the NCAA doesn’t care about the integrity of women’s sports.”
Does she care about the integrity of women’s sports? Whispering complaints from the shadows is no way to show it.
And Lia? In her first interview about the issue, all she could do is cheer on her own success, which suggests to me that she’s not the brightest neon tetra in the tank. She said in part,
“I’m just thrilled to still be able to swim and I love to compete and I love to see how fast I can go. It’s sorta an ongoing evolution of what I think I can go….I’m proud of my times, my ability to keep swimming and to continue competing. And they’re suited up times. I’m happy with them and my coaches are happy with them.”
I’m sure Barry Bonds feels the same way about all the baseball records he broke while on steroids, but he is smart enough not to say it out loud.