Washington Post’s Liberals Jeer Transgender Swimmer

Lia Thomas Penn Athletics, Facebook
Penn Athletics/Facebook

The Washington Post finally mentioned the Ivy League sex-and-swimming scandal, and the reaction from its liberal Democratic readers is overwhelming; Male swimmer Lia Thomas does not belong in women’s swim races, even if he thinks he has a woman’s “gender identity.”

Author Rick Maese’s January 10 article tried to thread the needle between his pro-transgender peers and the newspapers’ pro-fairness, pro-women readers:

Since she [sic] obliterated two school records and posted nation-leading times at a meet last month, Thomas has garnered attention from across the swimming community and right-wing media. Credentialed media at Saturday’s meet included Fox News, Newsweek, the Daily Mail and ESPN. Tennis icons Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert have publicly said Thomas has no business competing in women’s swimming, as has Olympian Erika Brown, who said last month it’s “time to start standing up for women’s sports.”

Nancy Hogshead-Makar, chief executive of Champion Women, a women’s sports advocacy organization, said concerns around Thomas’s spot on the women’s team aren’t rooted in transphobia or discrimination. Hogshead-Makar’s issues are with the rule book that allows Thomas to compete in women’s sports and with sports officials whom the advocate argues are putting Thomas’s competitors at a disadvantage.

“This topic is very uncomfortable for people. They don’t understand it, and so they took the lazy way out,” said Hogshead-Makar, who won four swimming medals at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. “The lazy way out is saying, ‘Put them in the women’s category.’

“To blow up the women’s category is just not the answer. This makes the women’s category meaningless.”

Unsurprisingly, the vast majority of tweeted responses to the article were scornful of the claim that men who claim to be women should be allowed to participate in women’s sports:

The response also used laughter to criticize the Post‘s acceptance of the claim that a man must be treated as a woman whenever he says he feels like a woman.

There were a few supporters who tweeted their support for Thomas:

The polls have shifted decisively against the transgender activists, partly because of coverage from mainstream media outlets, such as Breitbart News.

The Washington Post article was posted a few days after a strategy guide by transgender activists admitted that many polls show the public has already rejected the transgender ideology.

Breitbart News reported on December 30 about how the advocacy group is urging allies to conceal transgender advocacy under sympathy for various other groups:

“Right now, our opposition wins the debate on trans youth in sports against any and all arguments we have tried for our side,” admits a “Messaging Guide” by the California-based Transgender Law Center.

Overall, “we can at best elicit sympathy, a passive and often patronizing attitude that alienates our base [of current supporters] and fails to generate sustained interest from persuadable audiences” of swing voters, said the guide, which is titled “Transgender Youth and the Freedom to Be Ourselves.”

The counter-strategy is to stealthily hook their aggressive ideology to the public’s existing sympathy for poor people, women, and racial minorities, according to the messaging guide:

[Advocates should use] “…the Race Class Narrative to tell a convincing story of how … by coming together, we can ensure we all have the freedom to be ourselves and support one another.”

The guide offered several examples of how the advocacy can be concealed, including an ironically titled “Authentic Selves” pitch that matches the New York Times’s coverage of the Jeopardy! sex scandal:

Across our races, backgrounds and genders, we want to be treated with dignity and respect. But today, certain politicians are pushing laws that restrict our freedoms because of the color of our skin, what’s in our wallets, or because we are transgender. They exploit divisions and fears among us so they can get and hold onto power, denying us the basic rights, resources, and respect all people deserve. By [rejecting this division and] passing protections against discrimination, we can ensure each one of us has the freedom to be ourselves, pursue our dreams, and have a good life — no exceptions.

The advocacy group downplayed the huge health and psychological costs for people who claim to be transgender. But even the Washington Post’s op-ed section spotlighted the dangers in November.

“We may be harming some of the young people we strive to support — people who may not be prepared for the gender transitions they are being rushed into,” said a Washington Post op-ed by the two prominent advocates of the transgender ideology, psychologist Laura Edwards-Leeperand Erica Anderson, who says she is transgender.

The article was given a very prominent position — three-quarters of the first page in the Washington Post’s prestigious Outlook section on Sunday, November 28.

The New York Times has yet to address the transgender sex scandal, despite its extensive coverage of the #MeToo sexual-assault scandal.

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