It is unfair for school officials to allow teenage boys to enter girls’ track races, says the mother of one girl athlete who was bumped out of fourth place by a boy who claims to be a transgender girl.
Alaska high schooler Nattaphon “Ice” Wangyot was hailed in May as the first transgender student in Alaska history to win a state championship in girls’ track and field.
Wangyot, who was born a male but claims to be a transgender girl, beat a number of biologically female competitors at the finals at the state Track & Field meet in Anchorage. But Wangyot’s participation was met with criticism from some competitors.
And now the student is also taking criticism from the mother of one of the girls who lost her race to Wangyot.
After local news KTVA reported on Wangyot’s story, an angry mother of one of the celebrated student’s competitors jumped to the comment section of the Facebook entry of the news report to let readers know how unfair it was that a boy was allowed to compete against physically weaker girls.
The mother, identified as Jennifer VanPelt, also had a message for Wangyot who had quipped on the page, “If your kids have attitude and practice enough it gonna be more fun.”
If you were directing your comments towards me and my daughter I think you need to reevaluate what you said Ice. She is a phenomenal runner for a female. She happens to be the fastest female in the MatSu Valley. And she’s a freshman. Obviously she is at a disadvantage to you because she was not born with the physical attributes you were as a male. It’s 100% science. Men are physically different than females. Your times would not allowed you to compete with the boys at state. So don’t start casting stones telling me my daughter isn’t good enough. Because she is.
After Mrs. VanPelt posted her comments Rare.us reached out to the aggrieved mother and the woman was only too happy to comment further.
About her daughter’s fifth-place finish to a male runner, VanPelt wondered aloud, “How do you explain to her that not only does she need to train to beat her fellow female athletes, now she should also train to beat the males?”
The mother said she wasn’t completely sure how schools should handle transgender teens but she was sure that allowing biological boys to compete as girls “is probably not the best way.”
To VanPelt it clearly wasn’t fair to the biologically female competitors to allow a person born as a boy to compete against them.
“I believe parents and athletes alike should be worried. Transgender males being allowed to compete in female events are being afforded an unfair advantage,” she concluded. “Males are physically different than females. That’s a scientific fact. Hormones and body modification cannot change that. Today it’s one transgender athlete. Tomorrow it could be half the field.”
The issue can only get worse across the country after President Obama ordered that every school in the nation bow to his decree that all public schools make special arrangements for teens who claim to be transgender.
On May 13, the Department of Education (DOE) Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights and the Department of Justice (DOJ) Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, sent a “Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students” to state and local agencies that receive federal financial assistance from the DOE. The policy prescription in the letter allows students to use bathrooms and other facilities that they “gender identify” with at any given moment. A head of the Office of Civil Rights in the DOE thus joined with the White House legal arm, the DOJ, in sending the letter which they insisted should serve as “significant guidance” on how schools must handle the issue.
Already 12 states have announced that they are suing the Obama administration over the ruling.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at email@example.com