Lia Thomas was recently interviewed by Katie Barnes for ESPN. She stated during the interview that she didn’t transition to gain a competitive advantage in swimming and while that may be entirely true, the fact of the matter is that it did.
For those who don’t know, Lia Thomas is the first transgender athlete to win an NCAA Division 1 national championship. There was a lot of controversy over this since Lia use to compete as a member of the Penn men’s team in 2018-19. At that time she ranked 554th in the 200 freestyle, 65th in the 500 freestyle and 32nd in the 1650 freestyle. As her career at Penn wrapped, she moved to fifth, first and eighth in those respective events on the women’s deck.
Currently the NCAA requires at least 12 months of hormone therapy. The policy includes a requirement that transgender women swimmers demonstrate they have maintained a testosterone level below 5 nanomoles per liter continuously for at least 36 months before competition. It also requires transgender women to provide evidence that they do not have a competitive advantage from being assigned male at birth. That evidence will be reviewed by a panel of three independent medical experts.
To put this into perspective, I was diagnosed with low testosterone back in 2013. Normal testosterone levels are 300 to 1,000 nanograms per deciliter or 10 to 35 nanomoles per liter. My test levels were came back at 96 nanograms per deciliter, or 3.32 nanomoles per liter. This is well under the NCAA requirement for transgender competition, yet I’m a heterosexual male that had not had any previous hormone therapy.
I am a man who has a large build and is fairly strong. At the time my bench press was a max of 365lbs and I was throwing up 280lbs for my regular workouts. So my lifelong benefits of previously higher testosterone levels had built the muscle tissues an fibers that my body still had regardless of my new, naturally lowered testosterone levels.
Aside from personally understanding the physical benefits of going through puberty with normal testosterone levels, there are skeletal differences between biological males and biological women. This is how archaeologists are able to identify skeletal remains that are thousands of years old and can still identify the gender.
Regardless of any opinions on trans individuals, the facts are there that show they have a significant advantage in male-to-female transitions when competing in female sports. Under the NCAA rules that were adopted in February 2021 I would qualify to compete as woman. Does that really seem fair? I don’t think so, and neither does trans spokeswoman Caitlyn Jenner who has competed in the Olympics and won a gold medal. Jenner went so far as to say “Lia Thomas is one of the worst things that happened to the trans community because it’s such bad publicity,” She went on to add “We must protect women’s sports. At all costs. What Lia has done, beating biological women to win a Division I national championship, is anathema to what sports represents and the spirit of competition.”
Now you know my opinion, and the reasons I have for my opinion. Let me know your opinion in the comment section below.