Olympic golden girl Cate Campbell claims to have wrestled long and hard with herself before passionately promoting a ban on trans women in elite swimming to the FINA delegates. Perhaps she could have asked a transgender person what it was like to wrestle with themselves over their life-changing decision? Perhaps Campbell thought trans women made a decision to transition in order to gain an unfair advantage in sport?
Campbell and her ilk bleat ‘It’s unfair!’. It exposes their fear. An irrational fear of being beaten in the pool by someone with a perceived unfair advantage. Would an androgynous Amazonian 200cm tall cisgender woman competitor not have an unfair advantage? [It’s just] fear of the unknown. It seems difficult for elite swimmers and others to grasp the concept that trans women are women.
Currently there are no elite transgender women swimmers, but FINA wants to make sure there never will be. When it came to the vote, apparently 71 per cent of the FINA member nations voted against human rights.
Now it seems other sporting bodies are following suit, taking steps backwards, choosing discrimination instead of considering smarter decisions about how to accommodate a small, marginalised, sector of society in sport.
Next, unfortunately, this transphobic fear could infect community sport, affecting the young and truly vulnerable and threatening lives. It’s obvious some successful professional athletes and opinionated conservative politicians and shock jocks don’t have empathy for inclusivity. There is prejudicial fear masquerading as false concern about transgender women competing unfairly with cisgender women. How about being kind instead of worrying? Everyone should be able to enjoy sporting activities without fear, prejudice and discrimination.