Update 3/5/19: Ms. Navratilova responded to my tweet about this issue:
Not going to happen:)
— Martina Navratilova (@Martina) March 5, 2019
She and I don’t agree on much, but on this we have common ground.
Tennis great Martina Navratilova is learning the hard way that apologizing to militant transgender activists is not – and will never be – enough.
On Sunday, Navratilova used her personal website to address the recent controversies surrounding comments she’s made about the unfairness of men getting to compete as women in women’s sports. She wrote:
What I really wanted to do was try to open up the debate about equality and fairness in relation to transgender participation in women’s sport. There were too many voices that were silenced and shamed into submission and that is not right. My aim was to encourage a more scientific, rather than emotional, conversation and to search for a solution that would work better than current arrangements.
I was motivated by concern about the future of women’s sport and my worry that by trying to be fair and inclusive for one group, others can be adversely affected, that eliminating one kind of discrimination can inadvertently give rise to another.
I know that my use of the word ‘cheat’ caused particular offence among the transgender community. I’m sorry for that because I certainly was not suggesting that transgender athletes in general are cheats. I attached the label to a notional case in which someone cynically changes gender, perhaps temporarily, to gain a competitive advantage. We should not be blind to the possibility and some of these rules are making that possible and legal. The context may be different, but the case of Lance Armstrong, and the harm he did to his sport, is surely instructive.
She went on to note the rationale behind her belief that men should not be allowed to compete against women in sporting events:
It is obvious that men have certain inherent physiological advantages over women. These include height, weight, bone-density and muscularity. These advantages play a different role depending on the sport, with power-lifting being the biggest and most obvious advantage. Can we make sure those advantages are nullified so that women who have transitioned from men have the same level of physical capability they would have had if they been born female? Clearly, we can’t, because you cannot lose those extra inches of height (five inches on average) no matter what you do; some advantages of weight and muscle built up over time are also likely to remain, so to what acceptable degree should they disappear?
What she didn’t posit were actual solutions that would satisfy both sides because for one side – the transgender side – nothing less than total surrender to their demands will work.
Seriously. It’s reminiscent of mafia-style “with us or you’re the enemy” tactics that should have no place in this debate. Nevertheless, they are because extremist left wing groups like Human Rights Campaign and the ACLU get large chunks of money for stirring the pot on this subject, and keeping it alive keeps money flooding into their coffers, and the champagne flowing.
Not only that, but Democrats view divisive social issues like these as “winning” issues at the ballot box because they motivate their base voters to turn out. Follow the money.
Outsports writer Dawn Ennis responded to Navratilova by likening the legendary LGBTQ rights activist to …. Joseph Goebbels:
“The transgender problem”
The Nazis had “The Jewish Question,” and history records the horror which its leaders called the “Final Solution.” Navratilova treads a very dangerous line in asking if this issue of inclusion should be called a name that’s not so far off from Joseph Goebbels’ nomenclature.
Seriously? Is this what passes for actual debate at Outsports? You really cannot rationalize with rabid fanatics who play the Hitler card every time someone makes a valid argument that hits too close to home.
When a woman who is viewed as a pioneer on women’s and LGBTQ rights gets excommunicated from the club for openly discussing some inconvenient truths on how men’s and women’s bodies are different, you know there is no getting through. Which is why Navratilova needs to stop apologizing, and get back to telling off the haters.
Welcome to the “transphobe” club, Martina.
—Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter.–