KPFA: How Biden administration’s rule will affects trans student athletes

April 12. 2023

ERA Staff Attorney Kel O’Hara was interviewed on KPFA radio this morning about regulations to Title IX announced by the Biden Administration this week, and the larger context in the movement to defend the rights of trans students. Listen here, and fast forward to 13 minutes and 20 seconds.


“[Sports inclusion] is hardly the most important thing facing trans kids right now, and not nearly as much of an issue as the right is making it sound….I think it’s really important to remember that when we have these conversations, we could be talking about safety right now…. It’s about a larger attack… We’re having this big conversation about sports. Meanwhile, in states around the country, we’re looking at gender-affirming healthcare bans and rules that would forcibly out kids.”

“Of course I think that sports are important. I played sports. I love sports. I understand the value of that for all students. But it is frustrating for me as an advocate to be focusing on this conversation when I’m looking at other conversations that are so much more topical to safety to wellbeing, to someone’s right to live safely and as themselves.”

“What I want to see out of [this focus on] athletics is a culture that reflects a wider culture, of one that prioritizes safety and acceptance and wellbeing for trans kids.”

“When we talk about it this way, we’re giving people with XY chromosomes a little too much credit, and people with XX chromosomes not enough credit…. As someone who grew up competing in female sports, I think it’s really kind of gross to say ‘Well, there’s no way a cis girl or woman could ever keep up with a trans woman.’ I think that’s discrediting the tremendous, really athletic accomplishments of women and girls… I also think it’s assuming that, just because you’re born with certain chromosomes, you’re going to be athletically more gifted than a whole gender, or a whole cisgender.”

Listen to the full interview here. To skip ahead to this interview, fast forward to 13:20.

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