In a PC world, that’s too often short on common sense, the North Dakota Legislature is about to have an opportunity to show where they stand on a controversial issue— transgenders in publicly funded sports. Monday morning at 10:45am, Rep. Ben Koppelman will introduce House Bill 1298 to the House Human Services Committee.
If passed, HB 1298 would prohibit the state, its political subdivisions, or any “entity that receives public funding” from three things:
- Allowing individuals “assigned the opposite sex at birth” (i.e. transgenders) from participating on an athletic team “which is exclusively for females or exclusively for males.”
- Sponsoring athletic events that are exclusively for females or exclusively for males in which transgenders are allowed to participate.
- Permitting “an athletic facility, stadium, field, structure, or other property owned by or under the control of the state, political subdivision, or entity” to be used for an athletic event that is held exclusively for females or exclusively for males in which transgenders are allowed to participate.
Sex assigned at birth would be determined by “the individual’s original birth certificate”.
In a nutshell, while the bill would apply to athletic teams that are “exclusively male or exclusively female”, it can most certainly be argued that Rep. Koppelman is trying to protect girls’ sports in North Dakota. And I think that’s a good thing.
Coincidentally, the issue of transgenders in girls’ sports made news last week after Joe Biden issued an “Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation“. Some interpreted the order as being the beginning of the end for girls’ sports. The following phrase in particular caused such an outcry:
“Children should be able to learn without worrying about whether they will be denied access to the rest room, the locker room, or school sports…” (Emphasis Added)
Let’s remember, the fundamental reason we even have girls’ sports is because girls are biologically very different from boys. In my mind, that’s so obvious it’s not even really debatable. Whether we’re talking skeletal and muscular systems or a variety of other characteristics, boys are generally bigger, faster, and stronger.
Yet, we continue to see justification — like this from the ACLU — that ignore these fundamental realities. Meanwhile, we see headlines like, “Transgender Girls Win State Track Championships” and “Transgender Woman Who Last Year Competed as a Man Wins NCAA Track Championship“.
As one parent of a female athlete wrote for USA Today:
“Women’s sports were created to give girls a fair chance at competition. That includes fair victories and fair defeats. Girls deserve the same opportunity as boys to excel, to advance to the next level of competition, to win, and to stand on that podium. But allowing boys to compete in girls’ sports shatters girls’ dreams and denies our daughters equal opportunities.”
Though I support Rep. Koppelman’s efforts, there may be one downfall to his bill. And that is this— If a girl decides to transition to a boy, and continues to compete with girls, isn’t that an unfair advantage too? An example of this can be found in Texas.
In 2018, transgender wrestler Mack Beggs became a two-time state champion in the Texas girls’ Class 6A 110lbs division. Beggs was on steroid therapy treatments and had asked to compete with boys, but was denied. Beggs finished the final year of competition with an undefeated record against girls.
Is there anything currently in place to prevent an unintended consequence similar to this from happening if HB 1298 were to become law? Hopefully that’ll be hashed out in the committee.
Aside from that concern, I applaud Rep. Koppelman. In our PC environment, it takes guts to propose a bill like this. Especially now, as this appears to violate the wishes of a new presidential administration.
(If you support Rep. Koppelman’s efforts, please contact your representatives and the House Human Services Committee immediately.)
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- North Dakota Bill Versions: HB 1298 (nd.gov)
- Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation | The White House
- Joe Biden’s First Day Began the End of Girls’ Sports – WSJ
- Four Myths About Trans Athletes, Debunked (aclu.org)
- Transgender Girls Win State Track Championships
- Transgender woman who last year competed as a man wins NCAA track championship | TribLIVE.com
- Transgender athletes rob girls of the chance to compete fairly (usatoday.com)
- Transgender wrestler Mack Beggs wins Texas girls title again | Transgender | The Guardian
- Human Services | North Dakota Legislative Branch (nd.gov)