Culture/Society/Sports

Survey: Most Americans don’t support transgender athletes competing in women’s sports

A new poll found that most Americans disagree with the notion that biological males who identify as females should be allowed to compete in all-women’s sporting events.

The Rasmussen Reports survey found that 51 percent of Americans were opposed to transgender athletes in all-female sports, compared with just 29 percent who supported “allowing transgender students to participate on the sports teams of the gender they identify with.”

The poll noted that 20 percent of respondents said they weren’t sure.



The results of the poll, taken Oct. 31-Nov. 2, were virtually identical to a Rasmussen survey released in June, which found only 28 percent favored allowing transgender students “to participate on the sports team of the gender they identify with,” while 54 percent were opposed.

Other polls found that Americans were generally supportive of transgender people, however.

A Gallup survey taken in May 15-30 found 71 percent of U.S. adults supported openly transgender people serving in the military.

However, Americans surveyed remained split on allowing a person who identifies as the opposite gender use the same bathroom.

The poll found 51 percent said they supported transgender people using the public facilities that correspond to birth gender versus 44 percent who favored gender identity.

Transgender sports, however, has been far more controversial.

LGBTQ advocates have cheered the inclusion of transgender athletes competing based on the gender they identify with. However, opponents say biological males give those athletes an unfair physical advantage when competing in women’s sports.



The right-leaning Alliance Defending Freedom has filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of a Connecticut high school student, Selina Soule, after she failed to quality for the New England regionals when she lost a race to two biological male students who identify as girls.

“In fact, one of the athletes who displaced Selina previously competed against other male athletes in the winter 2018 season and failed to advance in boys’ indoor track events,” the ADF said.

“It wasn’t until that athlete began competing in girls’ events during the 2018 spring season that the dominance began. This biological male now holds more than 10 records within the state of Connecticut that once belonged to 10 different girls.”

Congressional Democrats have generally been supportive of allowing transgender individuals to compete in sporting events as the gender they identify with.

But others, like tennis great Martina Navratilova, who is openly lesbian and a staunch supporter of gay rights, say allowing biological men to compete in women’s sports is akin to “cheating.”

“It’s insane and it’s cheating,” she said in the [U.K.] Sunday Times. “I am happy to address a transgender woman in whatever form she prefers, but I would not be happy to compete against her. It would not be fair.”

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