Rachel McKinnon has recently won gold at the Masters Track World Championships in Manchester . She has beaten previous women's cycling records.
Rachel came out as transgender in 2004, and is a trans activist.
This is a tricky subject these days. One minor slip or poor choice of words could bring down a whole lot of accusations of being transphobic. Look at Sharon Davies and Martina Navratalova.
On the one hand for someone to believe that they are in the wrong body and need medical interventions to feel better about themselves is deserving of sympathy and understanding. Life must be difficult on every level and an ongoing concern.
On the other hand for a woman to compete against a transgender female does not feel fair. Rachel for example is six foot and has a male looking body. She has been through male puberty and has the muscle, lung capacity and skeletal advantages of that. How fair is the competition then for a woman to compete against someone who has such a huge physical advantage?
Are we likely then to see more transgender athletes who find that they can be champions as women while mediocre at their sport prior to transition. And what is meant by transition. Is it someone who has undergone major sex reassignment surgery and takes hormones permanently to maintain the outward signs of femaleness. Or is it someone who makes the decision to come out as a woman but chooses not to begin medical or surgical treatment for the time being.
When the winners stand on the podiums in the future, are we to expect gold silver and bronze awarded to transgender athletes while the biological women are pushed down the list. Will we ultimately see women retreat from sports as they have less and less hope of winning. I believe that some potential riders decided not to enter this particular race because of Rachel. Is this going to happen more often.
petunia Tue 22-Oct-19 16:16:46
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