Texas Governor Greg Abbott declared his intention this week to prohibit biologically male athletes from participating in women’s collegiate sports in the Lone Star State.
Abbott announced the initiative during a meeting of Young America’s Foundation in Dallas, where he promised to introduce a law banning biological males from competing against women in intercollege sports. Abbott has already moved to bar boys from participating in Texas public school girls’ sports.
Abbott cited the case of male swimmer Lia Thomas during his speech to illustrate his point. Born a biological man, Thomas swam for the University of Pennsylvania men’s team but later began identifying as a woman and joined the women’s team, achieving remarkable success.
Transgender athletes will be banned from Texas college sports, Greg Abbott vows https://t.co/SptGIV7WeY pic.twitter.com/ukrQmclW8x
— New York Post (@nypost) February 14, 2023
Abbott said Texas would stand for traditional athletic competition and would lead the way in reversing years of liberal gender indoctrination across the nation.
Other states have passed or are considering similar legislation. At least 17 have passed laws or placed restrictions on transgender athletes in sports. Several of those new state laws are being challenged in court.
In 2021, Florida enacted the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act, which prohibited people born biologically male from competing against women at the public school and college levels. The law quickly attracted multiple legal challenges, including a lawsuit filed by the family of a 13-year-old boy who was barred from playing on girls’ soccer teams.
As Abbott and Texas lawmakers pass a bill restricting males from playing female college sports, a legal battle is expected to follow. In response to Abbott’s announcement, LGBTQ groups have already criticized the proposed legislation, with Equality Texas claiming that the law would abandon “trans” athletes and leave them without an outlet for their “expression” in women’s sports.
The move to bar male athletes from women’s sports has proven to be a contentious issue between red and blue states that have created nationwide controversy and added fuel to the ongoing culture war in America.
Abbott’s proposal will protect the integrity of women’s sports and ensure a level playing field, but that is only certain to cause opponents to claim the law is discriminatory and violates the asserted rights of transgender men to compete unfairly against women.