Emmy Griffin / December 9, 2021

Male Swimmer Shatters Female Records

UPenn’s latest “star” is just the latest example of this humiliating charade degrading women’s sports.

The University of Pennsylvania’s “Lia” Thomas, an ostensibly gender dysphoric student whose given name is Will, is making headlines because he is shattering women’s swimming school records. What has long been the debate in this arena (or pool) concerns whether or not men should be allowed to compete in women’s sports.

Thomas had competed until only recently with the men’s swimming team at UPenn. He took a break from swimming during the pandemic but has joined the women’s team as a newly minted “transgender woman” for this school year. He is not just breaking the women’s records, but shattering them. During a three-day-long meet in which UPenn swimmers competed against Cornell and Princeton, he beat the record by 12 seconds in the 500 freestyle. In the 200 freestyle, he beat the record by seven seconds.

Thomas, as a biological male, should not have been permitted to join the girls’ team. Instead, he should have been encouraged to finish out his swimming career with the men. But since we don’t live in a society with any sense, let’s put it up to governance of respected institutional bodies.

These are large margins, to say the least, and the lady swimmers he was competing against were no slouches. This obviously calls into question the fairness of him competing with the girls’ swim team. Even the International Olympic Committee (IOC) states in its guidelines regarding gender dysphoric athletes that the standard for eligibility to compete with the gender of their choice rests on them not showing an “unfair, disproportionate competitive advantage.” Shattering female school records by seven and 12 seconds clearly demonstrates a disproportionate advantage and should disqualify him from continuing to compete with the women’s team. However, collegiate rules and the IOC rules are not the same, so he is allowed to take the laurels that rightly belong to an actual biological female.

Nine states led by Republican governors have already passed legislation that stipulates athletes are to compete with the sex of their birth. Thomas, who is an Austin, Texas, native, is from one of those states. Governor Greg Abbott signed House Bill 25 this past October. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania is not one of those nine states, so again Thomas lucked out.

The timing of Thomas coming out as “trans” is suspicious, to say the least, especially if he does have aspirations of swimming at a higher level such as the Olympics. His situation is very strange if he genuinely suffers from gender dysphoria, as he doesn’t follow the typical pattern. This disorder, as it has been understood, appears more often in males than in females, but it usually manifests in early childhood. Thomas was fully 22 years old before coming out as a trans “woman.”

When asked about this, he told interviewers: “The process of coming out as being trans and continuing to swim was a lot of uncertainty and unknown around an area that’s usually really solid. Realizing I was trans threw that into question. Was I going to keep swimming? What did that look like?”

Another regrettable aspect of this situation with Thomas stealing women’s swimming accolades is that there is no outcry from the women he cheated out of their rightful achievements. This signals either that those who protested against this travesty were silenced, or that all the women swimmers are so indoctrinated in woke ideology that they saw it as being inclusive and an ally. Frankly, both options are bad.

If women don’t start making a loud ruckus, they are going to lose their sports to men. This is taking a huge step backwards.


Correction: The article originally stated the race distance in meters, which in swimming is not accurate. It has been corrected.

12/14 Update: Two of Thomas’s female teammates spoke about the his record-breaking times under the condition of anonymity. One teammate said she was heartbroken that Thomas’s times have put the chances of a biological woman beating them out of the range of future female swimmers. She also talked about the atmosphere of discouragement that was oppressing the team. She made it very clear that her anonymity was crucial to protect her future because any dissenting views regarding binary gender are not tolerated. The second teammate who spoke out noted that even when Thomas won one of his races by 38 seconds, no one cheered until his teammate, Anna Kalandadze, finished and touched the wall. She said Thomas bragged after “winning” the 200 freestyle, saying, “That was so easy, I was cruising.” She added, “I know no matter what, biological women will never be on an equal playing field with transgender females.” Her biggest lament was, “Honestly, this is so upsetting to us because we want to be acknowledged for our hard work, but it seems like this just keeps overshadowing us.”

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