– Vogue’s recent list includes one person who is not like others, a transgender cyclist.
– British Cycling has an open category for transgender people.
– Male transsexuals have an advantage in physical sport due to biology.
Debbie Hayton, a transsexual schoolteacher and journalist, responds to the controversial decision of Vogue to include just one sportswoman in its list of 25 “powerhouse” women, and he is actually a man. Hayton challenges activists who claim that transwomen are somehow women and explains the implications of Vogue’s commentary. She argues that British Cycling has gone out of its way to be inclusive, and that there is no ban on transgender athletes in the sport. However, she believes that male transsexuals should not impose themselves on the female category.
Hayton further suggests that gender identity ideology is like a quasi-religious doctrine and explains that male transsexuals have an advantage in physical sport due to their biological sex. She concludes that the burden of proof is on those who think differently.
Two blank lines.
The Spectator‘s Debbie Hayton – a transsexual schoolteacher and journalist who believes in the reality of biological sex – responds to the controversial decision of Vogue to include just one sportswoman in its list of 25 “powerhouse” women, and he is actually a man. Here’s an excerpt.
Vogue magazine’s recent “powerhouse” of 25 “women [who are] defining – and redefining – Britain in 2023” includes one person who is not like the others. Emily Bridges is no more a woman than I am, but the transgender cyclist is the only sporting figure to have made the cut. What a kick in the teeth to the Lionesses recently returned from Australia.
We have become all too familiar with the unfolding scandal of male people displacing females in categories they thought were their own. Listening to the nonsense used by activists to justify their assertions that transwomen are somehow women is tiring and dispiriting, but we need to challenge them if we are to push back the tide.
Vogue’s commentary is disingenuous. According to the magazine, “the British Cycling Federation banned transgender athletes from the sport”. But nobody is banning Bridges from cycling. British cycling has gone out of its way to be inclusive – it has an “open category” which anyone can ride in, transgender people included.
But that is not Bridges wants, presumably because it means racing against men. Writing for Vogue, the cyclist announced that, “I’m divesting from the sport – I have to”. But why should Bridges even think that the female category was ever appropriate? Bridges is young, but it’s not only youngsters who mistake fantasy for reality. The truth is the same as it has ever been – there are two sexes and in physical sport one sex has an advantage over the other. That is why British Cycling retains a separate female category. The governing body also maintains separate classes for children – another group at a disadvantage. If male transsexuals feel that transition has hampered their performance, they could campaign for a separate category of their own and not try to impose themselves on another group.
Bridges, however, sees things differently: “Trans inclusion in sports has long been a highly contentious issue due to unsubstantiated concerns about transgender women having a physical advantage over cisgender women.” Taking issue with that statement is like debating with a young-earth creationist who claims the evidence for evolution is inconclusive, and the fossils were left behind by the Great Flood. Increasingly, it seems to me that when we take on gender identity ideology, we are up against a quasi-religious doctrine.
Of course, male transsexuals have an advantage in physical sport. We are on average bigger, stronger and faster than women, because we are male and women are female. No research that I could possibly envisage would overturn that self-evident truth, and in the meantime the burden of proof is on those who think otherwise.
Worth reading in full.