On the eve of the Olympics, the Alliance Against the Erasure of Women denounces the Spanish government’s intention to take away the podiums of women’s sport by allowing male athletes to participate in women’s sporting competitions. This is foreseen in the draft bill of the so-called Trans Law and in the draft bill of the Sports Law.
The campaign targets the IOC and the Spanish government to encourage mixed sports participation in recreational and school sport, but to respect women’s specific sports competitions, avoiding the presence of people who are biologically male.
The Alliance Against the Erasure of Women (Alianza contra el Borrado de las Mujeres, ACBM), a Spanish feminist platform that brings together around 130 women’s organisations, has already denounced the fact that the draft bill of the Trans Law, instead of respecting the principle that sports should be segregated by sex, establishes the idea that it will be the gender subjectively felt by each person that determines whether a male person can compete in women’s sport. With no other requirements than their will.
The ACBM’s concerns have been growing following the withdrawal of the text of the DRAFT LAW ON SPORTS and its replacement by a new content that opens the door to the presence of self-identified males as women in women’s sports categories.
How do these laws affect women athletes?
In all countries where self-ID in women’s sports competitions is being allowed, podiums and medals are being taken away from female athletes, thus undervaluing their effort and dedication, which are sacrificed in order to use women’s sport to validate «identities» and competitively privilege anyone who self-identifies as a woman.
Women’s organisations have already scientifically documented that the competitive advantages of those born male do not disappear even after years of hormone therapy, given their greater bone density, greater lung capacity, greater muscle mass, greater size and average height.
The efforts of women athletes will be cancelled out by second-rate athletes, mediocre when they competed as men, who are taking the medals and awards after self-identifying as women and advantageously entering women’s categories.
The destruction of women’s sport
The ACBM’s «Fair Play for Women» campaign is in support of professional athletes and demands that disloyal players who start with an advantage should not be admitted to women’s competitions.
The contents of the campaign make it clear that the right to participate in sports competitions cannot be at the expense of professional women’s sport.
Just over a century ago, women had no right to compete professionally. Currently, women’s participation is considerably lower than that of men. This is not by chance, it is a consequence of lower salaries, lower investment and negligible media interest. To all this we must now add the obvious physical advantage of their opponents, against which, no matter how hard they train and strive, women obviously cannot compete.
For the first time in the history of the Olympics, men who self-identify as women will compete against women.
The Alliance has written to the Minister of Education and Sport, Miquel Iceta, to the President of the Supreme Sports Council and Secretary of State for Sport, Jose Manuel Franco, and to the spokespersons of the Sports Commission in Spanish Congress.
The aim is to warn of the consequences for the promotion and future of women’s sport of allowing men who retain all their greater bone density, greater lung capacity, greater muscle mass, greater average size or height to compete against women.
The Alliance will also initiate a round of contacts with Sports Federations to explain the consequences of allowing transgender people in women’s competitions. It will also meet with clubs and elite athletes to warn them about the consequences of competing at a disadvantage in their careers.
In order to detail the consequences of removing sex as an objective criterion in sport competitions and to illustrate these consequences, the Alliance has published the booklet «Fairness in Women´s Sports», which will be sent to sport authorities, Federations and the media. Through its social media channels, the Alliance will keep the campaign alive throughout the Olympics.
The physical differences between men and women that justify sex segregation have been pointed out in several areas:
The MINISTRY OF DEFENCE, through its manual «Concepts and methods for physical training», explains that
“The lower muscle mass, fat-to-muscle ratio, bone structure, and lower hormone-specific levels mean that trained females can only achieve values of about 60-70% of the strength level of trained males under the same conditions.”
Four times Olympian for Brazilian Volleyball Ana Paula Henkel spoke about this situation stating that “including biological men, born and built with testosterone, with their height, strength and aerobic capacity of men, is beyond the sphere of tolerance”.
Martina Navratilova, too, has repeatedly stated that «it is surely unfair on women who have to compete against people who, biologically, are still men
USA Powerlifting has made it clear that “even with reduced testosterone levels, the biological benefits given (to men) at birth still remain over than of a female.”
In July 2020, more than 300 Olympic athletes signed a letter calling on the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Board of Governors to preserve a «fair and level playing field» for women’s sports. Most of the signatories have preferred to remain anonymous to avoid accusations of transphobia and lynching on social media. If not more violent reactions.
The International Rugby Federation banned trans-identified males from competing in elite women’s rugby in October 2020 to safeguard women’s safety and sporting fairness.
What does the IOC say?
In 2016, the IOC removed the sex variable and imposed as the only condition that those born as males who want to compete with females must have a testosterone level of less than 10 nanograms per millilitre of blood in the 12 months prior to the competition. To do so, they must undergo oestrogen treatments that slow down the production of testosterone, the male hormone.
This criterion has even been called into question by Dr Joanna Harper (TiM advisor to the IOC) for whom «the limit of 10 nanomoles is clearly excessive, as 95% of women have a level of less than 1.7».
Some have called this «gender doping». The ACBM considers that «there will always be competitive advantages that hormone treatment will not correct» and refer to real cases such as the 6ft 8ins tall transgender centre playing for a women’s team who «will always have an advantage». The well-known cases and those noted above show that even if their testosterone levels have been artificially lowered, a rugby player will be unstoppable and a weightlifter will be unbeatable.
The greater bone density, greater lung capacity, greater muscle mass, greater size or average height acquired during development as men do not disappear or diminish with the mere decrease in testosterone levels.
Ignoring this undermines Fair play for women.
Males who are competing in women’s categories.
Laurel Hubbard (formerly Gavin) won the silver medal at the 2017 World Championships in women’s weightlifting. Hubbard previously competed in men’s category but never achieved any success comparable to a world medal. In May 2021, it was announced that Hubbard will be able to compete in the Tokyo Olympics.
TiM cyclist Rachel McKinnon/Veronica Ivy won gold in women’s category (age group 35-39 years) at the 2019 Masters Track Cycling World Championship in Manchester, UK. McKinnon, representing Canada, set a «women’s» world record in the qualifying event.
Gabrielle Ludwig (formerly Robert) joined the women’s varsity basketball team after enrolling at Mission College in Santa Clara, California, despite being over 50 years old. He had previously fought in Operation Desert Storm as a man. He has also married twice. As a man.
Fallon Fox, TiM and martial arts fighter, critically injured opponent Tamikka Brents two minutes into the first round. Brents suffered damage to her orbital bone and a concussion. Her comments after the combat: “I can only say, I’ve never felt so overpowered ever in my life.”
Transgender athlete Mary Gregory won the 100% Raw Powerlifting Federation championship in 2019 and beat 4 records in female weightlifting. Other athletes, such as Sharron Davies said: “This is a trans woman with a male body and male physiology. A woman with female biology cannot compete. It’s a pointless unfair playing field.»
Hannah Mouncey (100 kg weight, 1.88 m height) is a transgender handball player who played the 2013 World Championship with the men’s team and was aspiring to complete in the 2019 Women’s World Cup, but at the last minute was not selected to play. Moncey stated that teammates vetoed “her” presence in the locker room and showers.
Maxine Blythin, a transgender cricket player, was named Kent Women’s Club Player of the Year in 2019.
Cece Telfer, sprinter. In 2016 and 2017, he was ranked 200th and 390th respectively. In 2018 he self-identified as a woman; in 2019 Telfer won the women’s 400-meter hurdles US title at the 2019 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
These are just a few examples with which the Alliance Against the Erasure of Women wants to point out some of the consequences for women’s professional sport of self-ID laws already passed in other countries and now to be passed in Spain.