An Arkansas attorney general has proposed a bill to ban transgender athletes from competing in women's school sports teams...
But, of course, it's caused a divide in opinions.
Here's the full story...
Now, this issue has been debated for quite some time now.
Ever since the Olympics allowed trans athletes to compete in 2016, there has been a solid divide in opinion over the matter.
While many are supportive of the inclusion of transgender athletes...
Others argue that it is unfair towards other athletes competing in the sport.
The subject of transgender female athletes is certainly the most debated...
Hi Daniel, you can abuse me all you like but facts matter. a) I support fairness & equality for all trans people.… https://t.co/Fmvdi7R06E— Piers Morgan (@Piers Morgan)1602942087.0
With people like Piers Morgan arguing that female trans athletes have an "unfair advantage" due to the fact they were born with a male anatomy, consisting of testosterone and other male hormones that increase strength and stamina.
It has been argued that their competitors don't "stand a chance"...
@DrJamesKent3 I know this won't be popular but athletes born female cannot possibly compete on a level playing fiel… https://t.co/MszM5flS06— Emma Louisa J 🇬🇧❤️ (@Emma Louisa J 🇬🇧❤️)1582758673.0
And there's a high number of people out there who feel transgender athletes shouldn't be allowed to compete because of this thought.
For instance, professional MMA fighter Ronda Rousey refused to fight trans fighter Fallon Fox in 2014.
"I feel like if you go through puberty as a man it's something that you can't really reverse. You can't just reverse that, there's no undo button on that. That's, unfortunately, her scenario," she said of her decision.
And New Zealand transgender weightlifter, Laurel Hubbard, faced a lot of criticism after she won a gold medal at the Pacific Games.
New Zealand-based lobby group, "Speak Up For Women," which advocates that sport must be categorized by sex rather than gender identity, called on the country's Olympic committee and sports minister to "defend women's sport."
"Kiwis (New Zealanders) know that males competing in women's sport is blatantly unfair," the group's spokesperson Ani O'Brien harshly said.
Nevertheless, transgender athletes are allowed to compete here in the United States...
And transgender girls are permitted to participate in sports that match their gender identity at schools and colleges across the country.
However, that's changing in some states.
Earlier this month, the State of Mississippi voted unanimously to ban young transgender athletes from competing in female sports in all schools and universities.
The vote took place on Thursday, February 11th, and won by thirty-six votes to 9.
5 people chose not to take part in the vote, while 4 voted "present," meaning they were not voting for or against the new legislation.
And now, it seems that Arkansas may be following...
As a general attorney for the state has proposed a bill that would ban transgender athletes from playing on women's school sports teams.
And of course, it's caused a huge divide in opinions online...
The bill was proposed by Attorney General Leslie Rutledge on Monday.
"The Gender Integrity Reinforcement Legislation Sports" Act if voted in, would ban transgender girls from athletics from kindergarten through to college.
As per the Associated Press, Rutledge said her legislation was in response to President Joe Biden's January 20th executive order to prohibit discrimination based on gender identity, including in school sports.
Rutledge said: "We don't want common sense to be overshadowed by so-called political correctness. This bill will ensure the integrity of girls and women in sports."
According to KATV, she also added: "I want to send a strong message to President Biden and his administration that here in Arkansas, we intend to require schools to prohibit biological boys who self-identify as girls onto girls' sports teams."
As expect, the proposed bill has received strong criticism, particularly from the American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas.
In a statement published on their website, Holly Dickson, ACLU of Arkansas' executive director said: "Attorney General Rutledge was elected to represent every Arkansan yet is abusing her power to exploit and bully transgender students and their families as part of a coordinated, sweeping, and sustained attack on LGBTQ Arkansans."
"This bill does nothing to protect women or girls in sport."
"It is reprehensible and harmful fear-mongering aimed at transgender children. Arkansas needs to support young Arkansans - not target a vulnerable group for political gamesmanship and at the expense of all young people."
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