Social Question

mazingerz88's avatar

Why are transgender girls being banned from girls’ sports in schools?

Asked by mazingerz88 (26358points) 1 month ago from iPhone

I haven’t really heard or read any clear explanations and Fluther is the best place imo to get them. Thank you.

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55 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

The right wing (and the religious conservatives) believe strongly that there is no such thing as transgender and that men are men and women are women. They have a very hard time with the concept of gender identity – mostly because it is written that way (men are men) in the bible, and the bible, of course, can not be wrong.

They have chosen to use that as yet another way to deny science and to push religious thinking by defining transgender as “something evil” that will put boys into girls\s locker rooms” and somehow expose girls to all sorts of depredation.

The bottom line is that this is a social political religious issue being pushed by the right wing to divide America. And if by doing so, they damage children – that simply doesn’t matter. because god is on their side.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

For the same reason that other people who have male bodies are banned from girls’ sports in schools. Male bodies have an advantage over female bodies in sports, regardless of the person’s gender identity. (Gender identity is different from biological sex.)

Even taking hormone blockers and hormone replacement therapy can’t change the fact that male bodies have different bone structure, vasculature, and other differences compared to female bodies.

seawulf575's avatar

It disadvantages cis females. @jellyjellyjelly identified it perfectly. If you look, it was the girls and their parents that were the biggest opponents to letting transgender women into the girl’s sports.

Blackberry's avatar

Because when men grow up, they’re bombarded with testosterone and women are not. This doesn’t change when you transition later in life as the development has already been done.

Living your life daily is different than fighting a woman or man.

JLeslie's avatar

I think it varies by state. Some states have tried, or maybe have, actually put in laws that children who are biologically boys, but identify as girls, should not be able to compete against girls who are biologically girls.

I think it is a serious dilemma. At a very young age the children would be fairly equal. If the biological boy goes through puberty they have a distinct advantage over biological girls. The average man has 50% more strength than the average woman, and after puberty let’s just go ahead and call them men and women. Men on average gain strength, height, length of their limbs, and each gender goes through different changes regarding center of gravity through puberty too.

Trans people who take hormones, arguably might be very similar to the gender they identify as, so that might change the equation.

I would say also that a lot of women who are the best at some sports possibly have higher testosterone than the average woman, but not likely close to what a man produces.

I think if I was a 17 year old female competing in a sport that men traditionally have much better speeds or strength, then I would think it is unfair a woman who is biologically a man, with normal male hormone levels can compete against me.

It’s really a difficult topic. I see arguments for both sides. I feel for a trans kid who feels caught in the middle, but someone is going to be in an unfair position. Who should it be?

Jonsblonde's avatar

I gave a great answer to jellyjellyjelly but shouldn’t have because the answer is based on disinformation.

Hormone blockers DO make a difference.

https://www.newyorker.com/news/our-columnists/the-movement-to-exclude-trans-girls-from-sports

I belong to a family of parents who have transgender children and all of my friends who have trans daughters are fighting to let their children play in school sports. These trans girls take blockers and have no competitive edge over their cis sisters.

Jonsblonde's avatar

Please read Rebekah’s story, then tell me she shouldn’t play sports with her peers.

https://www.rebekahbruesehoff.com/

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

@Jonsblonde I think it’s very nice that you know some trans gender people. But it doesn’t strengthen your argument at all. If anything it suggests that you have a motivation to come to a conclusion favorable to your friends and family, even if it is at odds with reality. Isn’t that what you’re saying, really?

Your own article points out: “This doesn’t mean that élite male athletes aren’t generally bigger, stronger, and faster than élite female athletes, only that testosterone levels don’t accurately or exclusively reflect their comparative strengths.”

Along those lines, this study shows that men have much more skeletal muscle than women do:
https://journals.physiology.org/doi/full/10.1152/jappl.2000.89.1.81?ref=dtf.ru&

Here, you can see that men also have larger skeletons and bone mass than women do:
https://asbmr.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1359/JBMR.041005

Hormones alone can’t account for all of the body differences between men and women. Your own link said so!

Jonsblonde's avatar

I don’t only know. My son is transgender. I’ve been fighting for his equal rights for four years. I do not have the energy to go on with you. It’s tiresome. My focus is on my community where I will make a real difference.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

I wish you all the luck in the world.

Jonsblonde's avatar

Luck hasn’t gotten my family anywhere. We worked to make our son’s life easier, but I gave you a great answer for your positivity. I appreciate it.

AK's avatar

Are transgender boys banned from participating in boys’ sports? Sorry @mazingerz88 for posting my question on your thread but is it just a one-way ban? Curious to know…

TJFKAJ's avatar

Maybe the more basic question is why is there any separation of males and females in sports in the first place.
Why not let everybody compete on the same field or court, and let the best one win.
Then everybody could stop worrying about it.

mazingerz88's avatar

What if transgender girls were allowed to play for a team as long as the opposing team also has transgender girls playing on their side?

KNOWITALL's avatar

It seems unfair to make across the board decisions on this, too bad we can’t judge it case by case or competitive career vs elementary school.

Cupcake's avatar

@JLeslie are there trans adolescents who do NOT take hormones/hormone blockers? That seems necessary during adolescence, to me. Before adolescence, there is no real issue. It is literally the hormones that provide the trigger for growth of bones and muscles/fat.

Certainly taking hormones/hormone blockers would not allow for the “biological advantage” that people seem so certain about. Men are larger with bigger muscles. But people born with penises who are women and take estrogen are not larger and do not have bigger muscles. I don’t understand the confusion (not talking to @jleslie any more, here).

@Jonsblonde You may not be watching this thread any more, but I appreciate you and am sorry for how hard you and your family have to fight.

I’m curious how much people on this thread have read or educated themselves about trans. I have taught sexual health at the undergraduate level, so I’ve read some but am by no means an expert (I am a health expert, however). I am 100% not on board with the “biological advantage” argument. I am 100% in favor of children/adolescents/adults living their gender expression and playing sports. Let’s promote acceptance and prevent suicide here, and not be so worried about this alleged “advantage” or “disadvantage”. Ugh.

JLeslie's avatar

@Cupcake I think there are so many different situations. @Jonsblonde can speak to it better than me. I think some parents might be reluctant to let their children take the hormone treatments. Some children might not come out as trans until they are already past puberty.

My only point was to recognize that hormone treatment changes things. That the objections to testosterone giving an advantage would no longer apply.

I was thinking how wrestling is done by weight class. Should there be hormone class for some sports?

Some parents start their boys a year late in kindergarten and it gives those boys an advantage in sports. It’s a similar “problem.”

Jonsblonde's avatar

Blockers are very important for the mental health of the child. It would help a young trans boy not develop breasts, for example. Some may not take blockers for various reasons but it’s very common that they do.

@Cupcake Thank you. I do agree with you. Just let the kids play. The only people who complain about this are the adults who don’t understand or don’t want to understand. The kids in school don’t care.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@jellyjellyjelly “For the same reason that other people who have male bodies are banned from girls’ sports in schools.”

Trans women don’t have “male bodies.” They have female bodies that were not recognized as such at birth. Some have XY allosomes, but genotype is neither equivalent to nor fully determinative of phenotype. Furthermore, not all trans women have XY allosomes. Some have intersex conditions, and some are even XX but were born with external genitals that were judged as male by the doctor who delivered them.

“Male bodies have an advantage over female bodies in sports”

I’ll have to assume you meant “trans women have an advantage over cis women in sports” because otherwise your statement would be irrelevant (since trans women don’t have male bodies). In any case:

(1) This isn’t actually true, as the dearth of trans women who dominate their respective sports demonstrates. Take the case of trans tennis player Reneé Richards, for example, who competed briefly in the men’s division (winning two matches and losing five matches) before competing in the women’s division (winning 66 matches and losing 110 matches). Or Fallon Fox, who never qualified for the UFC despite doing well in the MMA minor leagues (and was defeated by a cis woman who did later qualify for the UFC). Or the case of Soule v. Connecticut Association of Schools, in which the families of three cisgender girls filed suit in federal court against a variety of educational and sports oversight boards in Connecticut that had allowed trans girls to compete against cis girls in high school sports. The suit argued that cis girls cannot win against trans girls—and then, two days later, one of the cis girls the case was supposed to protect defeated one of the trans girls named in the suit.

(2) This is the same argument that people tried to use to keep black athletes out of sports. In baseball, for instance, it was argued that black men had bigger heel bones, which supposedly made them faster and more resistant to common injuries. And even after sports were desegregated, it was still argued that black athletes were “genetically superior” due to their thighs being “higher” and/or “bigger.” It’s a bad argument based on an unfounded essentialism, both then and now.

(3) Competition of all kinds is basically a filter for discovering whose combination of training and natural talent yields the best results. Do we ban abnormally tall people from basketball (since tall bodies have an advantage over short bodies in that sport)? Should Michael Phelps be banned from competitive swimming because his body produces lactic acid at half the normal rate?

“Even taking hormone blockers and hormone replacement therapy can’t change the fact that male bodies have different bone structure, vasculature, and other differences compared to female bodies.”

Leaving aside the fact that hormones are a pretty big factor, the differences you mention also exist between cis white women and cis black women. In fact, the average bone density of cis black women follows a similar curve as the average bone density of cis white men (particularly during prime competitive years). Should cis black women be kept out of sports where cis white women compete?

Jonsblonde's avatar

@AK Are transgender boys banned from participating in boys’ sports?

No. The people who are against trans girls competing don’t fear trans boys because in their eyes trans boys have female bodies, so they aren’t a threat. The same goes for the supposed bathroom threat. They fear trans women in bathrooms with other girls but they don’t fear trans men in bathrooms with guys.

seawulf575's avatar

Soooo…Bruce Jenner dominated in sports as a male. Now he is Caitlyn Jenner. But her body still has many attributes she had as a male. If she were to compete with cis women athletes her own age, she would dominate them…no doubt. Just because he decided to be a she, doesn’t change his physical structure.

Jonsblonde's avatar

@seawulf575 If she takes estrogen her body does change. She would lose muscle mass.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

@SavoirFaire Your gish gallop doesn’t address anything I actually said. I never mentioned DNA, and when I said that male bodies have an advantage over female bodies in sports, I meant exactly what I said. Nothing you wrote addresses that.

And then you start spouting racist tropes? Yikes. Did you know that race is actually a social construct?

canidmajor's avatar

Caitlyn Jenner plays against cis women in women’s golf tournaments.
Just FYI.
While still maintaining that trans girls shouldn’t compete.

And really, https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/feb/25/transgender-wrestler-mack-beggs-wins-texas-girls-title

I’m not sure why people think that the hormones and blockers work only one way.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@seawulf575 “If she were to compete with cis women athletes her own age, she would dominate them…no doubt.”

Maybe she would, maybe she wouldn’t. But “dearth” doesn’t mean “absence,” and the extant cases we have do throw doubt on the claim that trans woman athletes in general will dominate cis woman athletes in general (which is not the same as saying that one particular trans woman athlete who also happens to be one of the greatest athletes of all time would dominate other cis woman athletes her own age).

@jellyjellyjelly “Your gish gallop doesn’t address anything I actually said.”

I see you don’t understand what either a gish gallop or a straw man is. That’s too bad. In any case, everything that I said is a direct response to the quote above it, a response to the standard counterarguments to those responses, or a breakdown of the underlying logic behind your argument. That is all perfectly relevant, and that doesn’t change just because you want to avoid responding to it.

“I never mentioned DNA”

No, you did not. But bringing up DNA is a common rejoinder to the claim that trans women don’t have male bodies, and I decided to refute it up before it came up—not just to respond to you, but because other people reading the thread might have the idea come to mind. A writer’s interlocutor and audience aren’t necessarily identical, after all. I am interested in your non-genetic definition of “male bodies,” however. That would be useful to add to the discussion at this juncture.

“and when I said that male bodies have an advantage over female bodies in sports, I meant exactly what I said. Nothing you wrote addresses that.”

I addressed the bone density and other physical difference arguments further down, though perhaps you didn’t get that far.

“And then you start spouting racist tropes?”

How disingenuous. I didn’t spout racist tropes, I pointed out that your arguments were consonant with racist tropes. But I reject your arguments, so you are the one left in the position of taking on the same patterns of reasoning used by racists both past and present.

Nice try, though.

“Did you know that race is actually a social construct?”

Yes, and I have argued as much several times on this site. That’s why I argued against essentialism rather than for it.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

There is no need to make a personal attack (reading comprehension comment).

You actually did not address the substance of my argument. The fact remains, in spite of all the words you wrote, that male bodies have an advantage over women’s bodies in sports.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@jellyjellyjelly “The fact remains, in spite of all the words you wrote, that male bodies have an advantage over women’s bodies in sports.”

I have given arguments against your claim, and you have refused to address them. Instead, you have simply reasserted your original position as fact. This, of course, is an argument by assertion fallacy.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

I must have gotten confused about what was a response to my actual points vs you addressing some other audience, as you explained that you did (” A writer’s interlocutor and audience aren’t necessarily identical, after all.”)

Remind me of your evidence showing that male bodies do not have an advantage over female bodies in sports? Remember, my reading comprehension is poor, so keep it simple.

JLeslie's avatar

Generally speaking, I’d go along with let the kids play. Are there situations where K-12 sports would affect college or careers?

I’m ok with girls playing on the school football team. If there is only girls volleyball, I’m ok with a boy playing. I think in most cases none of it is so serious. In a case where there seems to be a real advantage or disadvantage that could be evaluated on an individual basis. Although, that can be problematic too.

canidmajor's avatar

@jellyjellyjelly To put it simply, your premise only applies to mature, unaltered bodies. Trans kids are often on puberty blockers, and/or hormone therapies, which, effectively, alter the dynamic of physicality. The boys are stronger often because the greater amount of testosterone promoteshe development of a masculine musculature. (Read the article I posted above)
Without the requisite testosterone, the musculature is more like a female of the same age.

There are numbers of articles on the internet that deal with this. Do avail yourself of them, it will help clear things up.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

I see. So you agree that male bodies have an advantage over female bodies, but you’re saying that when you take testosterone out of male bodies, they lose that advantage?

Then why did this article that jonsblonde posted say “This doesn’t mean that élite male athletes aren’t generally bigger, stronger, and faster than élite female athletes, only that testosterone levels don’t accurately or exclusively reflect their comparative strengths.” ? It sounds like that article is saying that testosterone DOESN’T explain all of the differences between male and female bodies. Am I misunderstanding?

canidmajor's avatar

Oh, ffs, @jellyjellyjelly, you are one who claims, absolutely, that the sky is always blue no matter what, no matter the context, aren’t you?
Never mind.

seawulf575's avatar

Oh, ffs @canidmajor you are great at jumping in and spouting your opinions, but when someone puts you on the spot you turn immediately to personal attacks and then close out.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

@canidmajor Nah. Anyway, that sounds like another ad hominem / distraction instead of a reasoned argument? No one here has yet provided any evidence at all that male bodies and female bodies perform the same in sports, or that removing testosterone from male bodies makes them perform just like female bodies in sports. Is it because no one is able to provide that evidence?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@jellyjellyjelly Remind me of your evidence showing that male bodies do not have an advantage over female bodies in sports?

The question is “Why are transgender girls being banned from girls’ sports in schools?” and you responded “For the same reason that other people who have male bodies are banned from girls’ sports in schools. Male bodies have an advantage over female bodies in sports.” So while “male bodies have an advantage over female bodies in sports” is one of your claims, it is not the only claim to which you are committed. You are also committed to the claim that this putative advantage justifies banning trans women from women’s sports.

This is a consequence of the linguistic context in which you made your statement, and to retreat back to lesser claims would be moving the goalposts. (Less importantly, it would also mean that your comments here are off-topic at best.)

My response, then, has three parts: (1) an argument that there isn’t really such an advantage (or if there is, that it’s not a significant one), (2) a critique of the pattern of reasoning used to make your argument (since the same pattern of reasoning would justify conclusions that have long been rejected, and that you presumably reject as well), and (3) an argument that even if trans women do have an advantage, it does not matter.

In short, my argument is primarily addressed to the second claim (i.e., that trans women have an advantage that justifies banning them from women’s sports), and I have addressed that claim by raising doubts about its premise, critiquing the underlying reasoning, and challenging the sufficiency of the premise for the conclusion. I have also, as a separate matter, rejected your framing of the issue (i.e., in terms of “male bodies” and “female bodies”) and blocked a potential counterargument to that rejection (for the benefit of other readers, but also in case you were thinking of going there).

Arguments are their own type of evidence, of course, but I have also brought in two important bits of data. The first is the dearth of dominant trans women athletes (empirical evidence that allowing trans women into sports does not lead to any significant advantage), and the second is the difference in bone density between cis white women and cis black women (one of the same differences you think justifies, or helps to justify, the banning of trans women from women’s sports).

But since you have asked me to explain the argument once more, I will take you through it again step by step.

First: why might we doubt that trans women and trans girls have an advantage over cis women and cis girls in sports? One reason is that trans women are not dominating their respective sports despite the fact that they have been allowed to compete against cis women. This isn’t to say that trans women never win, nor that a trans woman cannot or will not become one of the “greats” of their sport. It is only to say that the trend of trans women dominating their respective sports that banning them is supposed to prevent has not actually occurred despite trans women being allowed to compete against cis women. I gave examples of trans women competing in sports failing to dominate (despite predictions that their cis opponents didn’t stand a chance), and those who support banning trans women from sports have a notoriously difficult time pointing to actual examples of trans women creating such a problem for the sports in which they have been allowed to compete. So we have at least prima facie evidence that trans women have no significant advantage over cis women in sports.

Second: if the argument for A has the same reasoning as the argument for B and the argument for B is bad, then the argument for A is also bad. Similarly, if the argument for A has the same reasoning as the argument for B and we reject B, then we are logically committed to rejecting A. So if we say something like “since trans women have higher bone density than cis women, they should be banned from women’s sports,” then we also have to say “since cis black women have higher bone density than cis white women, they should be banned from women’s sports.” We have to accept or reject both. And since we presumably all reject this argument for banning cis black women from women’s sports, we must also reject this argument for banning trans women from women’s sports.

This is also true if we make a weaker claim like “higher bone density is a contributing reason for why trans women should be banned from women’s sports.” If we do not think that the higher bone density of cis black women is a contributing reason for banning them from women’s sports, then we cannot use higher bone density as a reason for banning trans women from women’s sports. And we don’t even have to argue about whether or not trans women really do have higher bone density than cis women. We can just grant the premise for the sake of argument because the problem here is the underlying logical flaw.

Third: we can grant that trans women have an advantage over cis women—even if only for the sake of argument—without having to conclude that it is significant enough to justify banning them. This is because all sports are about leveraging personal advantages, whatever their source. We don’t hold anyone else’s advantages against them—and in some cases, we even go so far as to celebrate their advantages—regardless of whether they are earned or unearned. Manute Bol was not banned from basketball for being 7’7” tall. Michael Phelps was not banned from swimming for producing lactic acid at half the normal rate. Nor do we ban cis black women from women’s sports over any differences in bone density and vasculature that they might have as a group. So it simply does not follow from “trans women have an advantage over cis women” that “trans women should be banned from women’s sports.”

And of course, we haven’t even broached the topic of why cis white women are considered the baseline for comparison here.

So that’s my argument as it currently stands. I hope this has clarified both what I’m arguing for and what I’m arguing against, as well as making explicit anything important that was merely implicit in my previous answers. If not, I am happy to answer whatever further questions you may have.

I am also still interested in your non-genetic definition of “male bodies” and/or “biological sex,” by the way.

Response moderated
seawulf575's avatar

@SavoirFaire ”(3) an argument that even if trans women do have an advantage, it does not matter.” Soooo…it is your contention that disadvantaging cis individuals is okay? Good to know.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@seawulf575 Honestly, that’s where I’m at with the whole argument. If equality is the goal, perhaps the qualifiers should be standardized.

Like Persons 5’5” or under, 150lbs or under, would that put any party at a disadvantage or could that be a solution so everyone gets to play?

To be quite honest, I’ve heard that some hetero parents don’t want trans in the locker rooms or on overnights, etc… so I’m not sure this will resolve the mama’s fears about trans athletes, sadly.

seawulf575's avatar

@KNOWITALL sports like wrestling and boxing have weight classes where people that weigh close to the same compete against each other. But others, like track and field or even baseball or basketball don’t have criteria like that. And a body that was originally built with denser muscle and different bone structure can have a distinct advantage in those sports.

I’m a bit on the fence about trans being in the locker room. Originally it was being put forth that if you identified as female, you should be allowed in the girl’s locker room. So all some pervert guy had to do was say “I identify as female” and he is given free access. That isn’t good for the girls and rightfully worries the parents.

And I worked with a guy that underwent sex change. He had to go through the entire process including cross dressing and hormone treatments before he would be allowed to have the surgery. The problem seemed to come up when it came to bathrooms. The women on site did not want this person in their bathrooms. She was supposed to try fitting in as much as possible as a woman so she shouldn’t be using the men’s room. In the end, they designated a women’s bathroom that she could use.

But the point of that which pertains to this discussion is that it was the women that objected. They didn’t object to the person doing a sex change operation, but were uncomfortable with that person in their private areas. I think that as much as everyone wants to be “inclusive” and demand equality, it is forgotten that other people are being impacted as well and have no less rights than the trans person.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@seawulf Yes but it’s awfully similar to integration and the womens right to vote, it’s all a mental thing, and we’re meant to advance equality for ALL.

Bad people hijack every movement so a few incidents shouldn’t stop progress. I truly believe equality is a good thing, look how far we’ve come.

Shoot when Republicans voted 2–1 against Democrats for the womens right to vote, I’m sure many people were sure the world would end. Ha!

cheebdragon's avatar

Is there an advantage here?
https://www.scpr.org/programs/take-two/2013/03/21/30988/gabrielle-ludwig-transgender-college-basketball-pl/
She’s only like 10 inches taller than all of her teammates.

Cupcake's avatar

@cheebdragon She has height, but lacks muscle definition and endurance. What’s the point? Did you read the whole article?

“I was having a very difficult time keeping up with these women, who, you can see the definition of muscle in their bodies, and they’re so quick, I had to say to myself, ‘What am I doing here?...

Critics of allowing transgender people on sports team argue that it may give an unfair advantage, but Ludwig disagrees.

“The length of time that you have to live as a woman, with all the hormones that have literally changed your body and put your strength at maybe just a little bit above a genetic woman, my age, that is balances out,” said Ludwig. “Muscles atrophy, lots of things change. I’m not walking on the court as a man, I’m walking on the court as a woman.”

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

@SavoirFaire am I to understand from your arguments 2 and 3 that you actually believe that no divisions in sport competitions should exist?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@seawulf575 “Soooo…it is your contention that disadvantaging cis individuals is okay?”

Assuming you have read the entire argument (and not just the preface), you must surely realize that this is not even close to a reasonable interpretation of my statement.

What I said is that sports are all about leveraging personal advantages. When Manute Bol played basketball, we didn’t complain about it disadvantaging shorter players. When Michael Phelps won his gold medals, we didn’t complain that the other swimmers were disadvantaged because they produce more lactic acid than he does. And when cis black women compete in women’s sports, we don’t complain about it disadvantaging cis white women (despite the fact that, as a group, cis black women have some of the same characteristics that are used to justify banning trans women from women’s sports).

It would therefore be inconsistent to say that cis women are disadvantaged by having to compete with trans women even if some trans women have some sort of advantage that some cis women do not have (which, we should note, does not rule out the possibility that some cis women might have other advantages that some trans women do not have). So unless we are willing to say that tall people should be banned from basketball, Michael Phelps (and anyone like him) should be banned from swimming, and cis black women should be banned from competing against cis white women, then we cannot reasonably argue that trans women should be banned from women’s sports.

“Originally it was being put forth that if you identified as female, you should be allowed in the girl’s locker room. So all some pervert guy had to do was say “I identify as female” and he is given free access.”

This isn’t actually true, though I know it was presented this way by some politicians and most media outlets. What trans advocates were putting forth was that people who had spent time and taken concrete steps towards living as the gender with which they identify should be treated accordingly. That said, I would agree that there were some big communication problems when this issue first came to prominence.


@cheebdragon “Is there an advantage here?”

Are you asking if being tall is an advantage in basketball? Because it surely is. But there are cis women playing college basketball who are the same height as Ludwig, and some who are even taller than her. And despite whatever advantage she got from being tall (which, again, is not an advantage that only trans women have), she was never even good enough to be a starter for her team.


@jellyjellyjelly “am I to understand from your arguments 2 and 3 that you actually believe that no divisions in sport competitions should exist?”

That does not follow from either argument, nor from the combination of the two. I am provisionally neutral with regards to the mere existence of divisions, though I am open to the possibility that none of them are in fact justifiable. I also think that public institutions have special responsibilities when it comes to issues like this. But I do believe that women’s sports should not discriminate based on what kind of woman one happens to be.

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

@SavoirFaire do you think that men should be banned from women’s sports?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@jellyjellyjelly “Should” has nothing to do with it. None of these divisions are imperative.

And since I have answered every question you’ve asked, is there any chance you might answer any of the questions I have asked you?

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

@SavoirFaire is banning men from women’s sports justified? (see your own use of “justifies” above)

seawulf575's avatar

@SavoirFaire Why are there men and women’s sports?

SavoirFaire's avatar

@seawulf575 “Why are there men and women’s sports?”

It was originally because women were either banned from competing with men in sporting events or because they were banned from participating in competitive sports altogether. In ancient times, women weren’t even allowed to enter Olympia during the Olympic games. Eventually, women were able to start their own leagues, and most people have been more or less happy with the arrangement since then.

@jellyjellyjelly “is banning men from women’s sports justified? (see your own use of “justifies” above)”

It’s not as obviously wrong as banning a subset of women from women’s sports, and the existence of the division seems to be largely voluntary on both sides. Since I’m against trying to solve problems that don’t exist, and since I believe that mutual consent is generally sufficient to consider a situation justified, I do not currently see the ban as being unjustified. Were I to come across good faith arguments against the separation, however, I would be open to them.

Speaking of good faith: if we are to continue this conversation, you are going to need to start answering some of my questions. Here are the ones I am most interested in your answers to:

(1) What is your non-genetic definition of “male bodies” and “biological sex”?

(2) As a group, cis black women have some of the same traits that you have suggested justify banning trans women from women’s sports. Given this fact, should cis black women be banned from women’s sports? If not, what is the relevant difference?

(3) Even if we accept that a particularly large ability gap might justify preventing two groups from competing against each other (outside of specific crossover events, perhaps), why should we believe that the gap between trans women and cis women is sufficiently large to justify banning trans women from competing against cis women?

jellyjellyjelly's avatar

You were pretty adamant about not moving the goalposts previously, so let’s stay on track until this issue is resolved, shall we?

Am I correct in understanding:

(1) you DO agree that an ability gap justifies banning some people from competing against one another

(2) you think the magnitude of that ability gap between trans and cis women is either zero, or it is too small to matter?

seawulf575's avatar

@SavoirFaire You side stepped the question. I didn’t ask for a history lesson on men and women’s sports. I asked why we have them? I mean, according to you, it shouldn’t matter if you are a man or a woman, the sport is just for the best of the best….right? So why have a WNBA? A women’s tee on the golf course? Women’s soccer? Come on now…be honest…...

Response moderated (Flame-Bait)

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