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26 Apr, 2021 14:43

Lawsuit that would have banned transgender athletes from competing in female high school sports is thrown out by judge in US

Lawsuit that would have banned transgender athletes from competing in female high school sports is thrown out by judge in US

A row has broken out over scholarships and school championship titles in Connecticut after the latest ruling on transgender athletes in the US, with a judge throwing a case out because the two sprinters involved had graduated.

District Court Judge Robert Chatigny dismissed the lawsuit, brought by cisgender runners who argued they missed out on wins, state titles and athletic opportunities after being forced to compete against two transgender runners, on procedural grounds, concludng that there was no dispute to resolve.

A year after the case began, the judge made his decision as a result of the pair completing their studies and the plaintiffs being unable to identify other female transgender athletes.

The suit had been seen as a potential landmark case after the administration led by former president Donald Trump had sided with the plaintiffs, only for his successor, Joe Biden, to oversee a withdrawal of that decision in February.

“No court, no agency has ever defined a participation opportunity as winning an equal number of trophies,” argued defense attorney Joshua Block, insisting that overturning existing policy would violate the equal opportunities rights of transgender girls.

The plaintiffs had countered by saying that the same rights are being threatened for cisgender girls, who they say are having to take on "biological males."

Plaintiff attorney Roger Brooks, from the Alliance Defending Freedom, said that the bringers of the suit did not have "equal quality" of competition because the transgender athletes were inherently physiologically advantaged.

Reaction to the ruling on social media was predictably divided and, at times, fierce.

"Never forget it was a hate group that filed this lawsuit," said one, adding that they were "so glad to live in Connecticut" where "we won't put up with that cr*p."

Another opponent of the lawsuit said: "They're kids. At that age, puberty is dubious at best, and so called testosterone levels fluctuate, so any claims of any kind of physical advantage are dubious at best.

"And for that matter, it's youth sports. It ain't the Olympics."

Many supporters of the judgement said that there were almost no examples of transgender athletes dominating school sports. "There are the two sprinters in Connecticut," claimed one.

"When lawmakers were pressed, they couldn’t come up with a single other example. There are not enough transgender females, let alone ones that are trying to play sports, to judge the issue."

Another said: "This is a draconian 'solution' in search of an actual problem. It's an attempt by Republicans to manufacture a cultural wedge issue to solve the problem of their policy agenda being deeply unpopular."

More than 20 states have so far introduced Conservative-led legislation to ban or limit transgender athletes from competing on teams or sports in line with their gender identity, including Idaho, Mississippi, Tennessee and Arkansas.

Around 80 people in total are expected to give evidence in ongoing testimonies on HB4042, a bill that would repeat those rulings on a wider scale, having passed out of the Senate earlier this month.

"Trans girls are girls," insisted a celebrant of the Connecticut ruling. "While we have been fighting against bills that try to erase transgender girls from girls sports, we heard about the lawsuit in Connecticut that claimed an unfair advantage by transgender girls and repeatedly misgendered them. Today the lawsuit is tossed."

A critic fired back: "Tell that to the high school girls from Connecticut who filed a lawsuit. Transgender biological males dominated their state and broke several records.

"That costs the girls opportunities and possibly scholarships. If you're okay with that, then you're simply anti-women."

The Alliance Defending Freedom said that it will appeal the lawsuit dismissal.

Also on rt.com Laws banning biological males from competing in female sports ‘UPHOLD WHITE SUPREMACY,’ ex-Team USA women’s soccer player says