When a competitor in any sport dominates the competition, it gets our attention. Granted, most Americans don’t follow swimming except during the Olympics, but there was a stunning accomplishment late last year.
In a women’s sporting event, a University of Pennsylvania athlete beat the runner-up by 38 seconds. Whoa! That’s unheard of in swimming.
In a statement by the university, “Lia Thomas delivered another record-breaking performance for the Red and Blue at the event. She won the 200 free with a pool, meet and program record time of 1:41.93. She won the race by nearly seven seconds and her time was the fastest in the country.”
Thomas dominated the 500-yard freestyle preliminaries and finals at the Zippy Invitational at the University of Akron. She earned a winning time of 4:34.06 in the finals, which is a new Ivy League record.
Thomas also set a new program, meet, and pool record in the 1650-yard freestyle, finishing more than 38 seconds ahead of the second-place contender.
It hardly seems fair. Well, truth be told, it isn’t.
According to commentator Clay Travis, Thomas trained as a male swimmer and was “downright good” when competing as a man, which has carried over when competing against women.
“I think it’s important to point out that this swimmer was for three years a member of the men’s swimming team and was downright really good. So this swimmer trained their entire life as a male swimmer, dominated. And then takes a year off and comes back as a women’s swimmer,” said Travis.
The New York Post editorial board also took issue with Thomas’ wins in her competitions as a woman in an op-ed arguing that Thomas “is not a hero. She’s selfish.”
Last year, feminist Kara Dansky criticized the Biden administration for its executive order that she said conflated sex and gender identification, and said it set a tone for schools to allow transgender women into girls’ athletic teams.
Dansky, author of “The Abolition of Sex,” said, “I’m a registered Democrat … I have made common cause with many Republicans who are fighting back against so-called ‘gender identity ideology.’”
“I really want everyone to understand that words like gender identity don’t have any meaning. They really don’t. I mean, they’re defined variously inconsistently, and vaguely in ways that don’t make any sense. Every single human being is either a male person or a female person. Everything else is a lie,” she added.
“It’s just very important that we all understand that situations like what we’re seeing … at the University of Pennsylvania, are not anomalous. This is happening all over the country … A lot of parents are speaking out. I think a lot of students are very scared of speaking out because saying, ‘Look, this isn’t appropriate, we shouldn’t have men competing in women’s sports’ is a very unpopular thing to say,'” she said.
USA Swimming official Cynthia Millen resigned in protest of transgender swimmer Lia Thomas and told Fox News that she can’t stand by and watch as girls are “thrown under the bus” by “biological” male competitors.
Millen stepped down recently after officiating USA Swimming meets for more than three decades. Her decision came days before the U.S. Paralympics Swimming National Championships in Greensboro, N.C.
“The fact is that swimming is a sport in which bodies compete against bodies. Identities do not compete against identities,” said Millen. “Men are different from women, men swimmers are different from women, and they will always be faster than women.”
Caitlyn Jenner, a former Olympic athlete who famously came out as transgender in 2015, also spoke out against allowing transgender athletes who were born male to compete on girls’ sports teams.
Jenner told TMZ, “This is a question of fairness, that’s why I oppose biological boys who are trans competing in girls sports in school. It just isn’t fair, and we have to protect girls’ sports in our schools.”
As the New York Post editorial board stated: “We can accept Thomas as she is while recognizing that this is fundamentally unfair.”