British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Wednesday (06/07/2022) that born males should not compete in women’s sporting events, after a transgender person was excluded from the female race.
The debate in Britain over the rights of transgender people has grown increasingly high, with other members of Johnson’s government saying it should be left to sporting bodies to decide who will compete.
But with divisions in the Conservative Party and opposition Labor emerging ahead of local elections on May 5, Johnson has gone even further by wading into the gender front of Britain’s so-called ‘culture wars’.
Boris Johnson: ‘It makes sense to me’
“I don’t think biological men should compete in women’s sporting events,” she told reporters. “It may be controversial but it makes sense to me.”
“And I also think that women should have places – whether it’s in hospitals, prisons, locker rooms, wherever – that are for women,” she said.
“If that puts me in conflict with some of the others, we have to work it all out. It doesn’t mean that I don’t have tremendous empathy for people who want to change their gender, to change them, and it’s essential that we give people the utmost love and support in taking those people,” Johnson added. decisions”.
His intervention came after the government had to take an awkward role last week, hours after a report was released that said it plans to repeal legislation banning “gay conversion therapy”.
Johnson government rules out “treatment of transgender people”
After protests from Conservative MPs in support of the ban, Johnson’s government said it would stick to the legislation but would rule out “transgender therapy” to allow counseling for teens seeking to change sex.
The change of course came a day after Conservative MP Jimmy Wallis became the first British lawmaker to come out as transgender, prompting messages of support from colleagues including Johnson.
“We’re going to ban gay conversion therapy, which is absolutely repugnant to me,” Johnson said. “But there are complications and sensitivities as you go from the realm of sex to the issue of gender, and there I’m afraid there are things that I think still need to be resolved.”
Exclusion of transgender cyclist Emily Bridges
Last weekend, transgender cyclist Emily Bridges was banned from participating in a women’s race in England after the International Cycling Union, the sport’s global governing body, ruled her ineligible.
The 21-year-old said she felt “harassed and demonized” after the UCI’s decision, which rescinded the permit granted to Bridges by British Cycling, the sport’s main governing body in the UK.
British cycling authorized Bridges to participate under a “sexual and non-binary participation policy”.
The initial decision to allow Bridges Bridges to compete caused a great deal of controversy, with threats of boycott by other runners if allowed to compete.
Critics claim unfair advantage
Critics claim that transgender athletes have an unfair advantage even when testosterone levels drop due to the effect of puberty on the body.
The government’s decision to exclude transgender treatment for transgender people from the next bill prompted the resignation of its LGBT envoy, Ian Anderson, on Tuesday.
It also led to the withdrawal of more than 100 charities and groups from the first International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Conference, scheduled for June, leading to the event’s cancellation.
Other cases of transgender athletes
New Zealand weightlifter Laurel Hubbard became the first transgender athlete to compete in last year’s Tokyo Olympics.
Last month, University of Pennsylvania swimmer Leah Thomas became the first NCAA Champion in Division I history after winning the women’s 500-yard freestyle.
Thomas competed on the Pennsylvania men’s team for three years before moving on and setting multiple program records with the women’s team, but his eligibility came under heavy scrutiny.
The latest guidelines from the International Olympic Committee (IOC), updated in November last year, stress that no athlete should be excluded from competition due to an alleged unfair advantage due to gender.
Fewa (AFP, Reuters)