LGBTQ+ Discrimination in Sports


from wion news

Kaylene Starks

The LGBTQ+ community has always received attacks but recently they have experienced more discrimination from government officials in the year 2022. Schools have gone from banning the discussion of queer history to the participation of transgender students in sports. According to NBc news, One hundred ninety-one bills were proposed last year to at least 25 states and 14 of them around the U.S. enacted the bill, disallowing transgender women to play in sports teams opposite of their sex. This doesn’t prevent biological girls from playing in male sports teams. 

 “This is not fair because their rights as humans are being taken away from them, it’s not okay to limit what someone enjoys just because of who they like and who they identify as,” said freshman Itzel Guerrero.

Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Montana, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas are all states that have added this legislation into law. But Arizona, Oklahoma, North Dakota, Kansas, Louisiana, Indiana and Missouri are all states that have passed the legislation but have not yet made it a law. Additionally, West Virginia was also among the aforementioned states that altered their law to fit the legislation but were banned from federal court.

Advocates of this bill state that this bill is protecting fairness in womens’ sports, disputing that transgender women have far more advantages than biological women saying that “men are biologically different from women.”  

“We are protecting womens’ sports. We’re ensuring a level playing field for female athletes,” said the Governor of Oklahoma, Kevin Stitt according to NBC.

The “Save Womens’ Sports Act” is one of the most successful anti-LGBTQ+ bills being enacted. There are more than 300 bills that are targeting the queer community and are currently passing through state legislation, many being aimed at transgender youth. Bills ban minors from gender reassignment surgery, locker rooms/bathrooms and even marriage. Saying the sports ban “isn’t about hate, it’s about fairness,” brings more resentment to opponents of this bill. 

Up until now, transgender females participating in sports aligning with their gender identity has not been a problem, it is estimated by ESPN news that 0.44% of high school athletes are transgender and you barely ever hear of them because a majority of them do not even win championships.”What was very telling for me was a comment by the parents who said, ‘We know that there are other transgender girls running, but we don’t care about them because they’re not winning,’” Lungarini said, Quoted also by ESPN news.

In Salt Lake City, Utah, GOP Gov. Spencer Cox’s veto of the prejudicial bill was overruled by the lawmakers. The vote was short of the required two-thirds majority needed to override it. The lawmakers’ votes overruled Cox’s veto and passed the bill, being added to the list of states which enacted the bill against transgender students.  

“I don’t understand what they are going through or why they feel the way they do. But I want them to live. And all the research shows that even a little acceptance and connection can reduce suicidality significantly,” said GOP Gov.Spencer Cox. received by NPR news.

“I cannot support this bill. I cannot support the veto override and if it costs me my seat so be it. I will do the right thing, as I always do,” said Republican Sen. Daniel Thatcher.

Parents testified against this measure saying this bill will create more division in schools. Concerned about the equality of school districts there is a belief this will bring guardians and school districts to the courtroom.