“In terms of absolute strength – that is, without regard for body size, weight or composition – the average man tends to be considerably stronger than the average woman. Specifically, the absolute total-body strength of women has been reported as being roughly 67 percent that of men,” according to the experts at Princeton University.
It’s a fact. And it begs the question, who has the advantage in an athletic competition in which a real woman is pitted against a man impersonating a woman?
“Such a situation was unthinkable throughout history, but it has emerged as an issue in a 21st century, anything goes, transgender world,” said Rebecca Weber, CEO of the Association of Mature American Citizens.
In her AMAC Better For America podcast interview with All-American University of Kentucky Swimmer Riley Gaines, the top female swimmer in America, Weber dug deep into this subject. Gaines lost out to a fellow who calls himself Lia Thomas who, presenting himself as a woman, became the first transgender swimmer to take the NCAA National Trophy away from a biological woman.
In her words, “It’s been a lifelong journey for myself and every other athlete at that elite level. It’s not something you can just jump into. This is something we’ve been doing for 20 years. And so to be there and have the NCAA choose a male over a woman … it’s a slap in the face”
Gaines warned that it has opened the door for future mischief. As she put it, “men who aren’t the best in the men’s category [can] come in and win national titles on the women’s side. And so, I think this is a slippery slope for sure. And I think that’s something we’ve seen over the past couple of months. This is rampant. It’s happening daily across all ages.”
And as an example, she went on to cite the case of a transgender athlete who placed first and stole prize money away from a female competitor.
Gaines said she never thought of herself as a feminist, pointing out that she is happily married and devoted to her husband, but she added that perhaps it is time to redefine modern-day feminism. Her focus is now on becoming an activist.
“We’re endorsing candidates who are willing to acknowledge that biological women deserve fair competition and spaces of privacy for changing [their clothes] where they don’t have to worry about being exposed to men,” she said. “We’ve been doing a lot of really, really awesome things and we’ve made changes, which is ultimately the goal. So, I’m thrilled with the direction that it’s going and I’m excited for the future.”
Gaines explained that she was all set to enroll in dental school, but it has been put on the back burner for now.
“I realized that dental school will always be there,” she said, “but the relevancy and importance of this issue and having this platform and not being afraid to use it and speak my voice, that’s not always going to be there. And so, speaking out has thrown a wrench in my life’s plans. But I’ve realized that if we, as women, are not willing to speak up for ourselves, how can we expect other people to do so? That would be wrong to do. So, I’m willing to take a stand because I have seen the implications.”
Gaines pointed out that women fought hard to achieve Title IX 50 years ago, the federal civil rights law that prohibits sex-based discrimination. She noted that while those who see themselves as transgender are, themselves, oppressed, women were and still are an oppressed group.
“I think initially before I spoke out, I was so worried about the backlash, and I was so worried that people would think I’m hateful or transphobic or whatever other term they would call me,” she said. “But since speaking out, I have had so much support across the globe, not even just locally. This is something that people all across the world are thanking me for. And it’s crazy to even say that it requires courage to use your voice, but I’m acknowledging that it does.”
Her message to women, whomever they are and wherever they are is to “Be brave. Use your voice. This is something that needs to be handled with volume and quantity. And the more female athletes that are willing to use that voice, that’s how this issue is going to stop [and make] a change that needs to be made to ensure fairness and privacy to female athletes who deserve it.”