We’ve done a couple of posts recently on University of Pennsylvania girls swim champion Lia Thomas, though the posts weren’t really about her as much as they were about her teammates, who have been speaking out anonymously about how they’ve been driven to tears watching the transgender swimmer absolutely dominate swim meets and smash existing records. A group of parents wrote to the NCAA and Penn and were told by the school that any girls upset can avail themselves of Penn’s “robust resources,” such as Counseling and Psychological Services and the LGBT Center.
But who’s looking about for poor Thomas. We don’t know what the quotation marks are for: Thomas is smashing records and dominating the season. NBC News, though, notes that some coverage of her resorts to such rhetoric as “deadnaming” and misgendering. In other words, if a story happens to mention that Thomas “was second-team All-Ivy league in 2018-19 — as a male,” that’s misgendering. That person no longer exists.
Some of the headlines about Lia Thomas’ wins said she “smashed” the records and continued her “dominant” season alongside pre-transition photos of her and using her previous name and male pronouns — practices known as deadnaming and misgendering. https://t.co/yfwGwLMeuL
— NBC News (@NBCNews) December 18, 2021
Jo Yurcaba reports:
Transgender advocates have condemned that coverage and some of the conversation about Thomas as transphobic. They said it mischaracterizes her victories to make it appear that transgender women are cheating just by being trans and implies that one trans woman winning means trans women generally are dominating women’s sports. They note that Thomas is competing within guidance issued by the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
Thomas has performed well at nearly every meet so far this season, but the media firestorm began after her performance at the Zippy Invitational at the University of Akron in Ohio, where she won three events and set three program, meet and pool records, along with two national records. In the 1,650-yard freestyle in particular, she was 38 seconds ahead of teammate Anna Kalandadze, who finished second. Right-wing media outlets have shared video of Thomas winning the race on social media.
We’re a right-wing outlet, and we shared that video in our previous post on Thomas. It’s pretty appalling.
It’s not transphobic to state that this isn’t fair to every single other athlete they compete against.
— Steve (@StvnAd) December 18, 2021
Forget any other part of the argument – this is deadnaming guys. We can’t use any logic cause we’re deadnaming.
— ThunderGun (@ThunderGun09) December 18, 2021
— Wuup_Jr. (@WuupJr) December 18, 2021
Deadnaming is referring to a trans person by their pre-transition name — something NBC News is careful not to do.
You'll not normalize this, NBC
— Sandy 〽️ (@RightGlockMom) December 18, 2021
Anyone want to check in with the science on this one or nah?
— NiftyPat MD and 37 others (@CHI2COL) December 18, 2021
So she’s been transgender for two years, only a short period of time, which means that she is competing with the body, the skeletal structure and the muscle mass of a male. It’s not complicated or difficult and to be against this does not make me transphobic.
— Boomer44! (@Boomer44000) December 18, 2021
The consensus among the majority won’t change no matter how hard you try to sell this story. A person born with the advantages of a male will always have those advantages no matter what changes they make to themselves.
— Scottie B (@Scottieb1109) December 18, 2021
She is having a huge negative impact on women’s sports. Stop denying biology when it comes to athletics. People can and should live their lives as they please, but this person still has a biological physical advantage that is a detriment to womens sports!!!
— Karla (@karla_osukarla) December 18, 2021
Leave the poor guy alone. Nothing wrong with dominating a bunch of women in their own league. Go equality.
— FrogsInThePot🌐 (@FrogsInThePot) December 18, 2021
NBC News doesn’t want anyone questioning or discussing if this is fair to the sport of women’s swimming. They rather no one ever talk about it and stay silent.
— Ben (@ben_poah) December 18, 2021
Phobia means fear. A female using a male body in order to dominate in her sport is not a fearful prospect. But it seems unfair.
— Seth Crosby (@sdcrosby) December 18, 2021
Pretty sure she smashed the records and continues to have a dominant season. Not even close. Just because she took some testorerone suppressants does not change the fact she has male muscles, bone structure, upper body strength. She is a prime example of Transwomen are not women.
— Jing Jackson Wang (@JingJacksonWang) December 18, 2021
I love how stating the obvious is now some sort of "phobic." There is %1000 zero question in anyone's mind why this person is dominating ladies swimming. Like zero. None whatsoever.
— Shamus Ignoramus (@imrob79) December 18, 2021
@NBCNews is trying to censor the language women use to fight for their right which includes the right to safe and fair athletic competition. Lia is a male who has an unfair advantage over the female swimmers. We need to unpack the woke misogyny and sexism @NBCNews.
— Nia Educational (@NiaEducational) December 18, 2021
When she's playing against women, breaking women's records, it's not unreasonable to mention she used to be a man.
— Tony (@TonyIKnow) December 18, 2021
In everyone’s playbook this is not fair to women in sports. Just like the German women athletes who were secretly given male hormones to increase their muscle mass and strength to compete internationally were stripped of their Olympic Medals.
— Teresa Lucas (@TeresaL12406083) December 18, 2021
Ironically, you yourself have just misgendered this young man by erroneously referring to him as “she” and “her.” He is a fellow who changed his name to Lia, which is a very silly boy’s name.
Also, please stop facilitating his misogyny that’s actually hurting real women.
— Huff (@Huff4Congress) December 18, 2021
I've got no problem referring to transgender people by whatever name they want to be called, I mean who but the most salty ridiculous people would, but I don't see how humans born male can compete in woman's sports fairly
— RedRock (@RedRockWesterly) December 18, 2021
Lia needs to man up and deal with the criticism.
— AdamInHTownTX (LGBFJB+ Supporter) (@AdamInHTownTX) December 18, 2021
NBC News makes it pretty clear which angle it’s coming from, which is in opposition to almost all of the replies.
Posting this again:
Hats off to Lia Thomas (right) for breaking all these records in women's swimming competitions. I just wish we knew what her secret was so every athlete could be as talented. #UPenn pic.twitter.com/QgloR405b9
— Brandon Morse (@TheBrandonMorse) December 7, 2021
Penn refers female swimmers upset about their trans teammate to counseling and psychological services https://t.co/t4UdzGlgL9
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) December 16, 2021