Transgender Olympic Weightlifter Becomes The Focus Of Fairness And Inclusion Debate

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Transgender Olympic Weightlifter Becomes The Focus Of Inclusion And Fairness Debate

43-year-old Laurel Hubbard, the first transgender woman to ever compete in an Olympics weightlifting event, has failed to win a medal after her she failed in all of her lifts.


The New Zealander failed one 120kg lift and two further lifts at 125kg.


After the failed lifts, Hubbard said:


"I am not entirely unaware of the controversy which surrounds my participation at these Games. And as such I would particularly like to thank the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for, I think, really affirming its commitment to the principles of Olympism and establishing that sport is something for all people, it is inclusive, accessible. Similarly, I would like to thank the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF). They have been extraordinarily supportive. I think that they, too, have shown that weightlifting is an activity that's open to all the people of the world."


Hubbard was born male but identified as a female. Her inclusion in the women's Olympic team had sparked controversy with many saying that biological males should not be competing with those born female as they have an inherent biological advantage.


Katherine Deves, co-founder of Save Women's Sport Australasia, was one of those to criticise the decision to let Hubbard compete, saying:


"Women have been able to have that competition for 16 years, and now you've got a male in there who likely take a spot on the podium and take a place that should be going deservedly to a female competitor."


Another critic was Tracey Lambrechs, a former New Zealand weightlifter, who said:


"When I was competing I couldn't speak my mind, I had to be wary of the consequences, but now I think it's fair that I do speak out for those who can't. There's no transphobia hate here. But I'm also for women (born as women) having equal rights in sport."


Joanna Harper, a transgender woman and amateur runner, who carries out academic research into transgender women in sport, said:


"There are people on one side who are saying we shouldn't allow this until there's firm data but on the other side there's people saying we shouldn't be putting restrictions on transwomen until we have firm data either. But in terms of ruining women's sports, that's just simply not going to happen."


[h/t: Reuters]


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Thinking Humanity: Transgender Olympic Weightlifter Becomes The Focus Of Fairness And Inclusion Debate
Transgender Olympic Weightlifter Becomes The Focus Of Fairness And Inclusion Debate
43-year-old Laurel Hubbard, the first transgender woman to ever compete in an Olympics weightlifting event has failed to win a medal after her she fai
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