Rapinoe claims transgender sports bans are ‘disgusting’
US women's national soccer team star Megan Rapinoe has spoken out against bans on transgender women taking part in elite-level female sport.
On Sunday, global swimming authority FINA's members voted to ban all transgender women who have completed any phase of male puberty from female events, while vowing to make an 'open' category for trans swimmers in the future.
Reacting to a development which has been well-received by the likes of World Athletics head Sebastian Coe, Rapinoe claimed it was "disgusting" to ban transgender athletes from women's sports.
"I’m 100% supportive of trans inclusion," Rapinoe stated in an interview with TIME.
"People do not know very much about it. We’re missing almost everything.
"Frankly, I think what a lot of people know is versions of the right’s talking points because they’re very loud. They’re very consistent, and they’re relentless," she claimed.
"We’re talking about kids," Rapinoe insisted, as per recent identical changes in some places such as Louisiana.
"We’re talking about people’s lives. We’re talking about the entire state government coming down on one child in some states, three children in some states."
Amid arguments that the likes of NCAA champion swimmer Lia Thomas destroy the spirit of competition and boast unfair advantages after undergoing male puberty, Rapinoe demanded that critics "show me the evidence that trans women are taking everyone’s scholarships, [and] are dominating in every sport... winning every title."
"I’m sorry, it’s just not happening. So we need to start from inclusion, period," Rapinoe went on.
"And as things arise, I have confidence that we can figure it out. But we can’t start at the opposite.
"That is cruel. And frankly, it’s just disgusting," she further balked, also saying that people should "get a grip on reality and take a step back."
In her own sport, however, Rapinoe might be enthused by a report at the weekend that claimed FINA's counterpart FIFA is currently drawing up fresh rules that will make it easier for transgender women to participate in female football.
According to the Daily Mail, a new draft framework from the Swiss-based authority will remove testosterone thresholds for transgender women and propose that footballers are allowed to compete in events related to their self-identified gender.