The state of Connecticut has offered a dismaying picture of the future of female athletics, with two male-to-female transgender runners routinely outpacing the competition at the state track championships.
The two biologically male students, Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood, finished first and second, respectively, in the 55-meter dash this year, crushing the competition. Miller set a new girls indoor record and also won the 300-meter. The year before, the two finished first and second in the 100-meter state outdoor championships.
Connecticut allows students to compete in sports as the gender they identify as, with no further requirements. If fashionable opinion has anything to say about it, this will be the universal trend.
Everyone is supposed to ignore the madness of it. In sports, the supposed fluidity of gender runs up against the ineluctability of sex.
Testosterone, which males get massive doses of beginning at puberty, is the original performance-enhancing drug. It makes men bigger, stronger and faster. It is easier for them to add muscle mass. They have bigger hearts (physically, not metaphorically, of course) and greater lung capacity, among other physical advantages.
This accounts for the considerable male-female gap in athletic performance. “This differential isn’t the result of boys and men having a male identity, more resources, better training or superior discipline,” Doriane Lambelet Coleman and Wickliffe Shreve of Duke Law School have written. “It’s because they have an androgenized body.”
At the 1988 Olympics, Florence Griffith-Joyner established a women’s record of 10.49 seconds in the 100-meter dash that no one has come close to touching ever since (in fact, there are unfounded suspicions that she was using a performance-enhancing drug).
Her epic sprint was ho-hum for a male. According to the International Association of Athletics Federations, there were 15 men in the United States whose best time was 10.49 in the 100-meter in 2018, and they were merely tied for 217th fastest last year.
Worldwide, there were 35 men whose best was at that time, all tied for 768th fastest in 2018.
This is why we have separate female and male competitions to begin with, so women can showcase their bodies and get recognition without being overshadowed by men with inherent physiological advantages. This common-sense reason for separate competitions and separate record books is now falling away.
The Olympic committee has dropped a requirement for sex-reassignment surgery for transgender athletes, and it has set a maximum level of testosterone for transgendered women that’s still high for biological females. Even if biologically male athletes get their testosterone levels down, their bodies are still different.
A former Olympic volleyball player from Brazil, Ana Paula Henkel, made this point in an open letter opposing the new Olympic policy. “This rushed and heedless decision to include biological men, born and built with testosterone, with their height, their strength and aerobic capacity of men, is beyond the sphere of tolerance,” Henkel wrote. “It represses, embarrasses, humiliates and excludes women.”
She cited the example of Brazilian player who formerly competed as a man and now dominates in the women’s league and will probably make the 2020 women’s Olympic team (and deny a spot to a female player who doesn’t have the build of a man).
It now takes courage to raise any such objections. Feminists in good standing the day before yesterday are getting ostracized for insisting that there are differences between men and women that matter and can’t be ignored or wished away.
When the tennis great Martina Navratilova wrote against biological men competing in women’s sports, she was roundly attacked as transphobic and swiftly booted from the board of the LGBT group Athlete Ally. Former Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies, from Britain, got mobbed for expressing similar sentiments.
We live in an age when stating the obvious is forbidden, and women’s sport may never be quite the same again.
By Rich Lowry
State Sens. Jessica Ramos, Julia Salazar and Brad Hoylman, along with Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, announced last week that they are crafting a bill to “fully decriminalize” what they call “sex work” in the Empire State. Their agenda sounds progressive, but it should alarm anyone who cares about women’s rights.
What these lawmakers are really advocating is the legitimization of pimping, brothel-keeping and the buying of sex. That is what full decriminalization means.
Wherever it’s fully legalized or decriminalized, prostitution proves to be a disaster for prostituted women, most of whom are pulled into the sex trade by traffickers and pimps eager to seize the massive profits legal prostitution offers.
Permitting men to purchase sex with impunity increases demand for prostitution, which makes selling women’s bodies a lucrative enterprise. That, in turn, is a boon to sex traffickers.
A 2013 study in the European Journal of Law and Economics compared data from countries that had legalized prostitution versus those that hadn’t. It found that trafficking and sexual exploitation are “most prevalent in countries where prostitution is legalized.” Conversely, the researchers found “a causal link from harsher prostitution laws to reduced trafficking.”
What Salazar & Co. propose is a trafficker’s dream come true.
Curious to know what legalizing the sex trade looks like? Look no further than Germany, considered “Europe’s biggest brothel,” where more than a million men purchase sex every day from an estimated 400,000 women, mostly from Eastern Europe and the undeveloped world, sold in more than 3,500 brothels.
In Germany, “sex entrepreneurs” run multimillion-dollar enterprises through online virgin auctions, drive-in sex stalls, outdoor “sex boxes,” mega-brothels and all you-can-consume 24/7 flat-rate sex buffets.
In “Paradise,” one of Germany’s mega-brothels, around 3,000 men purchase 150 women’s bodies for sex on a daily basis. Josie, a woman working there, told a documentary filmmaker that she had slept with around 15,000 customers: “When I say that, it makes me feel so sad.”
Josie’s make-up bag includes a tube of xylocaine anesthetic gel to numb the physical pain resulting from being used by up to 20 men a day. Last year, a German court convicted the owner of Paradise, Jürgen Rudloff, of abetting human trafficking.
“Sex work” is a clever euphemism preferred by the pimp lobby to whitewash and sanitize the brutalities inherent to prostitution. It’s not a “job” but a system of gender inequality: An estimated 98 percent of the 42 million people in prostitution worldwide are women, while 99 percent of those who buy them are men.
Prostitution is also a form of violence against women. Studies show that 71 percent of prostituted women are physically assaulted on the job; 68 percent experience post-traumatic stress disorder at the same levels as combat veterans and victims of torture; 89 percent wish to escape prostitution.
A 2004 mortality study of 1,969 female prostitutes, published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, found that homicide accounted for roughly half of the deaths. The researchers noted: “No population of women studied previously had a . . . percentage of deaths due to murder even approximating those observed in our cohort.”
No wonder many progressives are up in arms over the proposed legislation. As Taina Bien-Aimé, executive director of the New York-based Coalition Against Trafficking in Women, told me, “For New York legislators to propose decriminalizing such abuse as long as men pay for it is an abject betrayal of women’s right to equality.”
Governments that claim to care about women’s equality, dignity and safety should never adopt laws that enable exploiters, such as pimps and sex buyers, to operate freely.
A better alternative is the abolition or Nordic model. First adopted in Sweden, then in Norway, Iceland, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Canada, France and Israel, the Nordic model protects women in prostitution by offering social services and exit opportunities, while targeting those who use and profit from their bodies: sex buyers, pimps and traffickers.
It is this model that truly dignifies and values women. Salazar & Co. should take heed.
Laila Mickelwait is the director of abolition for Exodus Cry, which works to abolish sex trafficking and the commercial sex industry.
JetBlue was forced to apologize Thursday after honoring convicted cop-killer Assata Shakur – mother of Tupac Shakur – as part of Black History Month at a John F. Kennedy International terminal in New York.
$79.98 Featuring a wonderful, wandering floral print on a refreshing pastel background, this dress feels both festive and romantic. It has an embroidered mesh yoke pan…
“The intention was always to unite our crewmembers and customers around the importance of Black History Month and we apologize for any offense the poster may have caused,” a JetBlue spokesman said in a statement, according to FOX 29 Philadelphia.
The image of Shakur, also known as Joanne Chesimard, was in the exhibit for 21 days before one flier noticed.
@JetBlue Rumor has it that you are celebrating Black History month at LGA by celebrating Assata Shakur? She is a convicted cop killer. Please tell me this is not true.697:55 PM – Feb 23, 201996 people are talking about thisTwitter Ads info and privacy
“Became the first woman to be placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted list after escaping to Cuba from prison where she was serving a life sentence for the 1973 murder of a police officer,” one of the bullet points read.
The tweet posted by Jen Muzio originally said the poster was at LaGuardia Airport, but she later clarified the poster was seen at JFK.
Shakur, a former member of the Black Liberation Army, was convicted of murder for a 1973 shooting that led to the death of a New Jersey State Trooper. She escaped from prison in 1979 and is believed to be living in Cuba.
By Ryan Gaydos