Metro Weekly

HRC video highlights absurdity of Republican anti-trans athlete bills

The GOP's latest target is trans athletes, but HRC is highlighting the lack of evidence to support their legislation

trans, transgender, athlete
Photo: Steven Lelham / Unsplash

A new video from the Human Rights Campaign highlights the manufactured crisis that has led to multiple Republican states introducing or passing bans on transgender people competing in sports according to their gender identity.

Trans athletes have become the latest wedge issue for the GOP, who argue that allowing transgender females to compete in women and girls’ sports disenfranchises or unfairly impacts their cisgender competitors.

Arkansas yesterday became the latest state to approve an anti-trans ports bill, preventing trans student-athletes at all levels from competing according to their gender identity.

And five years after passing its infamous anti-trans “bathroom bill,” North Carolina this week introduced a ban on transgender student-athletes. 

HRC, the nation’s largest LGBTQ rights organization, estimates that there are almost 50 bills in legislatures across the country targeting transgender athletes.

In a video posted to HRC’s social media, the organization highlights the hypocrisy of such bans, given the lack of evidence that transgender students are denying scholarships or titles to cisgender female athletes.

In the video, opponents of trans athletes across the country are asked to cite specific examples of women and girls losing a title or scholarship to a transgender person — or to even give examples of transgender athletes competing in their state.

The results are damning, as the video shows:

“In a year that has taken a toll on all of us, it is shocking that legislators across the country are using their time and energy to attack LGBTQ kids,” HRC says in the video.

Earlier this month, Republican South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem tried to backpedal on her state’s trans student-athlete ban, after spending weeks pushing for such a ban to be enacted.

After lawmakers approved a bill that would restrict trans athletes to competing according to their assigned sex at birth, Noem said she was “excited” to sign the bill but asked the legislature to alter it in order to conform with NCAA guidelines on transgender athletes.

It came just days after Noem signed a bill that allows businesses in South Dakota to refuse service to LGBTQ people if they have a religious objection to their sexuality or gender identity.

In a rare example of lawmakers doing the right thing, South Carolina last week rejected a ban on trans student-athletes competing according to their gender identity.

One Republican state representative said his colleagues had failed to demonstrate that trans athletes competing posed such a significant problem that it required legislative intervention.

Read More:

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