Three college swimmers beaten Transgender athlete Lia Thomas Pause Together in a single podium stepFueling the debate over her eligibility to compete in elite women’s competitions.
Thomas, 22, made history by becoming the first transgender person to win the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I title Thursday night.
Her victory in the 500-yard freestyle in Atlanta received various reactions, with some spectators booing after she defeated the Tokyo Olympic medalist who finished third.
In contrast, Emma Weyant, who came in second, received a lot of cheers from the crowd, and some social media declared the University of Virginia swimmer a “real winner.”
Thomas, who participated for three years before moving to the men’s team at the University of Pennsylvania, defeated Wyant in 1.75 seconds, 4 minutes 33.24 seconds.
Ms. Thomas has broken records since her participation in women’s competitions and has been the focus of ongoing debate about trans women’s eligibility to compete in elite women’s sports.
Her presence at the NCAA Convention, the hottest event in American college swimming, has attracted protests from protesters of Atlanta’s self-proclaimed women’s rights.
“There are all viable ways that it is a serious timid act by the NCAA.” Kelly-Jay KeaneThe head of an organization called Standing for Women told Fox News.
Opponents also participated in the event, showing their support for Thomas and the railroad for Transphobia.
At the NCAA ceremony, Ms. Wyant in 2nd place was filmed on the podium with Erica Sullivan in 3rd place and Brookford in 4th place, the silver medalist of last year’s Tokyo Olympics.
Images of three athletes holding trophies away from Ms. Thomas were widely disseminated online by commentators claiming that transgender athletes have an unfair advantage over their rivals.
Former Trump administration official Angela Morabito tweeted.
Sharon DaviesA former British Olympic silver medalist and voice critic of transgender athletes, he later called the result “injustice.”
“I try to ignore it”
Asked about her reaction to her victory on Thursday, Thomas replied:
“I’m trying to focus on swimming. What do I need to do to get ready for the race? And try blocking everything else.”
Thomas’s performance makes her A heated discussion In the United States, we are discussing how to balance transgender rights with the claim that adolescents as men have an unfair advantage.
The NCAA now requires transgender female athletes to be granted one year of hormone replacement therapy to participate in women’s sports.
Thomas said he started HRT in May 2019 and came out as a transgender later that year. The NCAA has approved her participation in the women’s event.
But since then Adopt a set of stricter guidelines Elite transgender female athletes have a three-year HRT and need to prove that the panel of medical professionals has no unfair advantage.
These rules will be phased in over the coming season.
Thomas’ participation in the elite women’s competition has generally been endorsed by rivals and teammates, but some have problems with her participation.
Last month, 16 of her 40 college teammates criticized what she regarded as an “unjustice advantage” in an anonymous letter.
“We fully support Lia Thomas in her decision to confirm her gender identity and move from male to female,” the letter read.
But, “Biologically, Lear has an unfair advantage over competition in the women’s category, which is also from her ranking, which jumped from 462 for men to number one for women. it is clear.
“If she were eligible to compete with us, she could break the pen, ivy, and NCAA women’s swimming records, a feat that was impossible for a male athlete.”
In response, more than 300 current and former swimmers have signed their names in an open letter defending Mr. Thomas’ competitiveness.
One of those signatories was Mr. Sullivan. Sullivan competed with Thomas for the lead in most of Thursday’s race, finishing third.
Thomas is also backed by the NCAA’s 200-yard and 100-yard freestyles this weekend.