Fina International Swimming Federation, an international body that governs swimming and has been enacting rules on Sunday to prohibit transgender swimmers like Lia Thomas, from participating in events organized by its authority.
Officials ruled that men experiencing puberty should not compete with women. Only transgender athletes who are claiming to have changed from male to male before age 12 would be eligible for competition as women.
They also created new categories of trans swimmers for those who have become transgender since puberty.
Fina described Fina’s new policy as an easy way to implement “full inclusion”For trans athletes but not for the price of “competitive fairness”For natural-born females
“Fina’s approach in drafting this policy was comprehensive, science-based and inclusive, and, importantly, Fina’s approach emphasized competitive fairness,” said Fina executive director Brent Nowicki.
Husain Al-Musallam, Fina president, also pointed out that the rule is meant to ensure fairness.
“Fina will always welcome every athlete,” Al-Musallam said. “The creation of an open category will mean that everybody has the opportunity to compete at an elite level. This has not been done before, so Fina will need to lead the way. I want all athletes to feel included in being able to develop ideas during this process.”
This rule will exclude Lia Thomas from UPenn, who decided not to swim. “transition” as an adult, and any male-born trans athlete who hadn’t “transitioned”Before the age 12. Because few trans athletes meet these requirements, the strict rule would prohibit nearly all transathletes.
Thomas enraged many by entering the 2021/22 college swimming season with the school’s women’s swim team and blowing away all competitors to win the NCAA championships. Critics said Thoma’s more powerful male physique gave him an unfair advantage, and the long list of broken records and wins Thomas racked up seemed to justify the anger.
— Colin Wright (@SwipeWright) March 17, 2022
Fina’s rule will undoubtedly make waves across the world of sports.
FINA’s new eligibility criteria for transgender athletes and athletes with intersex variations is discriminatory, harmful, unscientific and not in line with the 2021 IOC principles. If we truly want to protect women’s sports, we must include all women. https://t.co/MDjrWB6GrU
— Athlete Ally (@AthleteAlly) June 19, 2022
In the past the Olympics accepted international rules such as Fina’s. Still, the IOC could refuse to employ Fina’s policy.
It is possible, however, that Fina is not the first to fall. Other sports authorities could join Fina in applying similar rules.
In any event, Fina’s decision will cause an upheaval in the world of sports. Only time will tell if Fina’s rules for trans athletes will start leaking out to other sports or if Fina will become isolated, labeled as “bigots,”They were forced to go around the other way.
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