Women’s Sports Coalition: ‘This Is Not an Anti-Lia Campaign,’ It’s ‘Pro-Woman’

University of Pennsylvania transgender athlete Lia Thomas competes in the 200 freestyle finals at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships Friday, March 18, 2022, at Georgia Tech in Atlanta. Thomas finished tied for fifth place. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
AP Photo/John Bazemore

“We think everyone should play sports fairly,” a women’s sports group that is working to preserve biology-based eligibility told the New York Post on Saturday, and stressed the movement is not specifically aimed at Lia Thomas, the transgender male collegiate swimmer currently competing as a woman, but is actually “pro-women.”

“Save Women’s Sports is a coalition that seeks to preserve biology-based eligibility standards for participation in female sports,” according to their website.

“This is not an anti-Lia campaign,” Beth Stelzer, an amateur powerlifter and the group’s founder told the Post. “It’s a pro-woman campaign. We think everyone should play sports fairly.”

Beth Stelzer (bethstelzer.com)

Save Women’s Sports founder Beth Stelzer (bethstelzer.com)

On the group’s website, Stelzer “stresses that defending women in athletics ought not be a partisan nor religious issue,” and said:

If we allow males to compete in female sports; there will be men’s sports, there will be co-ed sports, but there will no longer be women’s sports.

Stelzer and her group have been protesting at the NCAA swimming championships in Atlanta this week, where Thomas won the 500-yard freestyle Thursday night, beating out three Olympic silver medal-winning female swimmers, Emma Weyant, Erica Sullivan, and Brooke Forde. During Thomas’s three years competing on the men’s team, he was ranked 462nd among male swimmers, making his chances of qualifying for the Olympic Games slim.

Protesters, one holding a sign, stand as Pennsylvania transgender athlete Lia Thomas competes in the women's 200 freestyle final at the NCAA swimming and diving championships Friday, March 18, 2022, at Georgia Tech in Atlanta. Thomas finished tied for fifth place. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Members of Save Women’s Sports stand as Pennsylvania transgender athlete Lia Thomas competes in the women’s 200 freestyle final at the NCAA swimming and diving championships Friday, March 18, 2022, at Georgia Tech in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Breitbart News reported of Thomas’s “easy” win Thursday:

Some female swimmers lamented that Thomas began boasting about the ease of his victory following the competition.

“That was so easy. I was cruising,” a female swimmer reported Thomas as saying. “At least I’m still No. 1 in the country.”

“We came down here to support the female athletes,” Stelzer said. “Our intention was to respectfully raise awareness while letting the girls know they matter and that we will hold the line for them.”

Stelzer said she is protesting alongside women from both sides of the political aisle, including Democrats who do not agree with the “radical ideology” their party has adopted, with their blind support of movements such as transgender men competing with women.

New York Democrat congressional candidate Maud Maron spoke out against her party’s transgender ideology in a Newsweek op-ed on Sunday, titled “It’s Time to Get Serious About Saving Girls’ and Women’s Sports,” where she said:

This June, Title IX will turn 50. The half century mark should be a time of triumphant celebration. But women’s sports is under an existential threat today that our current legislators are either too scared to address and solve or too disinterested.

When men can compete on women’s sports teams and against women, women lose. Girls and women lose the races and competitions to people born boys and men. They lose scholarship opportunities, sponsorship dollars and the dignity of knowing your hard work, talent and discipline can pay off. And they lose the chance at a fair fight—a fair opportunity to show who is the best athlete in their category.

“The unfairness of people born men competing in women’s sports has sparked broad resistance. The simple truth cannot be erased: Every time a person born male takes a spot on a women’s team, a female athlete loses. That’s not fair. It also should not be legal,” Maron concluded.

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