Such a frenzy

Hey, The Nation, ask a stupid question why doncha.

“a frenzy” – yes those hysterical women, how dare they get in “a frenzy” just because a large ruthless self-serving man forces himself on them and cheats them at their own sport.

The author of this garbage is one Frankie de la Cretaz. Google turns up the information that “they” is a freelance writer and a “they” After a lot of scrolling I still can’t find whether they is a he-they or a she-they. From the ruthless smugness and smug ruthlessness I’m guessing they’s a he.

The question is why The Nation sees fit to publish this kind of offensive openly misogynist insulting dreck.

The title is insulting – “How Women’s Swimming Got So Transphobic” – it’s not transphobic for women to want women’s sports to go on being for women. It’s sexist to call women names for wanting to keep their own sports.

The subtitle is insulting – “Almost no other sport is as hostile to trans athletes—and that’s because its culture created the perfect conditions for transphobia to take root.” I repeat – it’s not transphobic for women to want women’s sports to go on being for women. Also it’s not “hostile to trans athletes” to keep men out of women’s sports. The issue is not that he’s trans, it’s that he’s male. Male trans people could solve this problem in a heartbeat by not bullying women.

So. The article.

When Lia Thomas first entered the women’s NCAA swimming scene in 2021, her presence was immediately felt. National media outlets became obsessed with her. She got the kind of attention rarely given to swimming athletes outside of the Olympics.

Thomas was good, but she wasn’t the next Simone Biles of her field. So what explained such a frenzy? Simple: Thomas was a transgender woman having success in the women’s division.

No shit, Sherlock. He got a lot of attention because he was cheating women in their own sport. That’s a bad thing to do, and he shouldn’t be allowed to do it. It’s not fair to the women.

There was a lot of news media attention, Cretaz notes.

“That level of coverage of women’s swimming, specifically, has not come close to being matched in the year after the end of [Thomas’s] swimming career,” says Ari Drennen, the LGBTQ program director at Media Matters. “They like to say that this is coming from a place of caring about women’s sports, but it’s hard not to notice that they don’t really cover women’s sports unless trans women are competing in them.”

I think you’ll find that’s a pattern all over the news media. They don’t really cover victims of mass shootings until the mass shootings. They don’t really cover Ukraine until Russia invades it. They don’t really cover global warming until it’s far too late to do anything about it. The news media don’t cover things that aren’t news.

The intensity of the critical media coverage helped fuel an equally intense backlash against Thomas. Sixteen of her University of Pennsylvania teammates signed a letter midway through the season saying that she had an unfair advantage.

Because he does.

That letter was organized by former Olympic swimmer Nancy Hogshead-Makar, who, along with fellow Olympic swimmer Donna de Varona, is a founding member of the Women’s Sport Policy Working Group, which has been leading the movement to ban trans women and girls from competing in the women’s division in sports across the board. (The Human Rights Campaign has called the WSPWG “a hate group.”) 

(The Human Rights Campaign is wrong.)

And World Aquatics, the international federation that governs the sport of swimming, released a new transgender participation policy in July 2022 that essentially bans trans women from competing by creating incredibly restrictive requirements for their inclusion.

No, it doesn’t ban them from competing, it bans them from competing against women. This is such shitty dishonest “reporting” – how is it that The Nation waved it through?

And why shouldn’t men face “incredibly restrictive requirements for their inclusion” in women’s sports? Why shouldn’t they just be told “No”? Why don’t women matter here?

(As I have written previously, there is no real evidence that trans athletes have an inherent advantage over their cisgender counterparts.)

I repeat: the issue is not trans athletes, it’s male athletes in women’s sports. Does The Nation not have any editors? Why did it publish this dishonest pile of dung uncorrected?

The World Aquatics policy was the culmination of a long-simmering anti-trans sentiment in the sport of women’s swimming, particularly in Western countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. While most sporting bodies have taken a hard turn to the right in recent years when it comes to allowing transgender athletes—and transgender women, in particular—to compete, women’s swimming is, in some ways, uniquely anti-trans.

It’s not “anti-trans,” it’s not a “sentiment,” it’s not “a hard turn to the right” or any turn to the right at all.

Jumping ahead –

How did someone like Hogshead-Makar, who fought so hard for girls to be protected in the world of sports, end up on the perpetrating end of such a targeted campaign of harassment and exclusion? If you ask her, she believes she is still “protecting” girls—by defining girlhood as exclusively belonging to cisgender girls and seeing transgender girls as a threat. In doing so, she has fallen for one of the most insidious transphobic talking points—that transgender girls are “biological men” and therefore a threat both on the sporting field and in the locker room.

Yes how dare she “define” girlhood as meaning girls instead of girls and some boys who pretend to be girls? So archaic, so strange, so hard to believe.

There’s more. Lots, lots more. I don’t know if I can face reading any more of it. I would still love to know how The Nation manages to think this merits publication.

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