Idaho's first-in-the-nation state law banning male athletes from competing against teen girls in their own sports is being challenged by liberal groups in court, and other states are no doubt paying attention.
The state’s Republican-led legislature passed the Fairness in Women's Sports Act in March, making Idaho the first state to take such action but also setting up a predictable court challenge by the American Civil Liberties Union.
Steve McConkey of ministry 4 WINDS Christian Athletics says the outcome of that court challenge is important because other states are considering similar legislation and will be watching.
"What's real important about this particular situation,” he says, “is that Arizona is looking in on this because they're about ready to decide against transgenders also."
Other states reportedly considering such laws are Louisiana, Alabama, and Tennessee.
Teen girls fighting back
McConkey, a veteran of track and field, has witnessed the transgender issue affect the Boston Marathon and the Olympic Games, for example, where officials face obvious accusatons of unfair competition but risk accusations of discrimination and "transphobia."
Organizers of the respected Boston Marathon clarified in 2018 that runners can compete in the gender they identify with, even though the BAA does not query runners about their gender when they register, Runners World reported.
The article said the issue of transgender athletes had surfaced after three transgender women - biological men - qualified for the 2018 marathon.
"Whilst many runners have celebrated this news," the article explained, "others have questioned whether the three runners had an unfair advantage, due to higher levels of testosterone.
A similar demand by high-school level biological males is a new phenomenon, and those male athletes have been cheered by pro-homosexual groups, defended by groups such as the ACLU, and enjoyed support from coaches and school leaders who are praising the male athletes – at least publicly – in the name of tolerance.
Meanwhile, frustrated female athletes and their coaches, no doubt risking termination, have only recently began pushing back on allowing male athletes to slam girls on a wrestling mat and outrun them on a track.
OneNewsNow has reported on Connecticut teen girls who are suing their state’s athletic commission for allowing teen boys to compete in their track meets.
Selina Soule (pictured at right), one of the teens, was the first to step forward and condemn the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference, and now three other teen girls are fighting their school officials and state officials for allowing male athletes Terry Miller (pictured above) and Andraya Yearwood to compete.
Soule has said she has faced backlash by high school officials for fighting the allowance, but Alliance Defending Freedom, which represents the girls, has said Miller and Yearwood have won 18 girls state championship titles that were spread among 16 females the prior year.
Also in March, the U.S. Dept. of Justice announced it was reviewing the ADF lawsuit on behalf of the female plaintiffs.
Legislators pushed ‘transphobia’
Back in the Idaho legislature, Republican lawmakers faced vocal opposition from Democrats accusing them of transphobia, from business groups warning them of financial repercussions for the state, and from fellow Republicans who ran from the issue.
Sen. Jim Guthrie, a Republican lawmaker who voted against the bill, claimed the law burdens girls who may struggle to afford the doctor’s visit for an examination to confirm their sex.
Sen. Maryanne Jordan, a Democrat who voted against the bill, called it not only a “solution in serach of a problem” but predicted the lawsuit, too.
“It’s clear that our legislators are more interested in pushing their transphobia through the legislature, regardless of who it damages, than in listening to the facts,” a Planned Parenthood spokesperson told the media. “We have worked to appeal to their sense of compassion for how transgender people will be treated, how they will be ostracized further by this legislation, and the very true danger this would pose to a population of their constituency that is already fighting against being othered. “
The legislation was introduced in the House by state Rep. Barbara Ehardt, former Division 1 athlete and later a coach. In the state Senate, the legislation was introduced by Sen. Mary Souza.