We previously discussed the entry of transgender collegiate swimmer Lia Thomas (formerly William) into the competitive circuit at the University of Pennsylvania. Thomas was described as “smashing records” in the sport and received glowing coverage from the media as an example of transgender individuals breaking barriers, etc., etc. Representatives from the school talked about how excited they were and the excellent prospects for the swim team this season. But not all of Thomas’ teammates are as enthusiastic as the press coverage would have you believe. Some of them have reached out to the press on condition of anonymity (to avoid retribution from the progressive mob) and said that many of the young women on the team are “frustrated, upset, and discouraged” by what’s going on. (Washington Times)
University of Pennsylvania transgender swimmer Lia Thomas says she‘s “thrilled” to be competing on the women’s team, but apparently not all of her teammates share her enthusiasm.
Two female Penn swimmers told sports website OutKick in anonymous interviews that team members are frustrated and upset as they watch Thomas smash records in her first season on the women’s team after three years as a men’s freestyle standout.
“They feel so discouraged because no matter how much work they put in it, they’re going to lose,” said one swimmer in the Friday report.
One of the other members of the team said that Thomas’ participation had cast “such a cloud over everything,” and left other team members in despair. All of this has apparently been going on in the background, even as Thomas has been telling reporters how great the “strong support” from the rest of the team and their coach has been. So why aren’t the women speaking out publicly? They said that the school administration had “strongly advised” them not to speak to reporters about Thomas, but most of them had privately raised their concerns with the coaching staff.
Thomas is now listed as holding records in multiple events. But as we previously discussed here, those are the records for the University of Pennsylvania and specific tournament events. In the 100, 200, and 500-meter freestyle events, the swimmer falls well short of the NCAA women’s records. As we also noted, Thomas is laughably far behind the men’s records in the same events and likely wouldn’t even qualify for most meets.
The women on the team have every right to be concerned and this should be sending up warning flares for the entire NCAA. Competition for scholarships and spots on collegiate athletic teams is very fierce. It appears that Lia Thomas’ prospects for reaching such levels in the men’s events at many schools would have been remote at best. But in the women’s division at U-Penn, there was a path to a top spot available, pushing some female swimmers who had been training their entire lives further down the ladder or out of the competition entirely.
If Thomas can do this, how much temptation will there be for other male swimmers applying for college admission and grants to do the same thing? And what recourse will there be for the actual female swimmers who then fail to make the cut? For years now, we have been publishing the results of studies showing that no amount of hormone therapy or even surgery fully removes the natural advantage that males have over females in nearly all athletic events. And if enough male competitors decide that they are now somehow females and are allowed to compete in this fashion, the schools may as well simply do away with women’s division sports across the board.
EDIT: (Jazz) The original version of this article identified the school where this took place as Penn State. It was the University of Pennsylvania, so the article has been updated. Our apologies for the misidentification.