Banning Transgender Athletes From Playing is Hateful and Ignorant

The+Texas+House+passed+HB+25%2C+banning+transgender+students+from+participating+on+sports+based+on+their+gender.+Trans+students+will+be+forced+to+be+on+the+teams+corresponding+with+their+sex+on+their+birth+certificate.+Graphic+by+Chloe+Boyd.

Chloe Boyd

The Texas House passed HB 25, banning transgender students from participating on sports based on their gender. Trans students will be forced to be on the teams corresponding with their sex on their birth certificate. Graphic by Chloe Boyd.

Katie Hendler, Human Resources Director

This week, the Texas House passed a bill titled TX HB 25 to ban students from playing on a team with their gender. Soon, this will reach Republican Governor Greg Abbott, who will likely vote in favor of the bill. This bill is incredibly harmful to transgender athletes.

If/when Governor Abbott signs this bill, Texas will become the tenth state to enact this ban against transgender athletes. Texas will also become the state with the largest LGBTQIA+ community to have a ban like this.

As a cisgender woman, I can only imagine the fear this bill will inflict on my transgender peers. This bill states that students will be placed into sports teams based on the sex on their birth certificate, totally disregarding the fact that sex and gender are two different things.

First of all, many people believe that transgender women have an unfair advantage from being assigned male at birth. This is not at all true, as taking estrogen can actually lower athletic performance. It is evident that this is not about fairness and is completely about transphobia.

Every person deserves to play a sport if they want, and many schools make Physical Education courses mandatory. While some classes are inclusive of all genders, others are specified for girls or boys. This means constant misgendering, as well as being super damaging to the mental health of these students. It makes no sense why we as a society would rather be hateful than care about the wellbeing of our children and peers.

Transgender suicide rates are extremely high, and continuing to harm their human rights with this bill can only make it worse. According to The Trevor Project, an organization that specializes in LGBTQIA+ youth, one-third of transgender teens have attempted suicide. This on its own is a huge issue. How can we put even more lives at risk? I’ve noticed that the same people that say they are “pro-life” are the same people that ignore the fact that their actions are causing people to commit suicide. How is this pro-life?

I have no idea why people want a bill to take away rights from my peers. It benefits nobody and harms so many. I hate to watch my friends have to fight for the rights that everyone else has been given for free.

The Trevor Project and the Transgender Education Network of Texas are both resources dedicated to supporting the transgender community and helping the LGBTQIA+ youth who are struggling with mental health. Please consider donating or spreading awareness about these organizations to help those in need.