Court places injunction on West Virginia law banning gender-confused males from women’s sports – LifeSite

CHARLESTON, West Virginia (LifeSiteNews) — An appellate court issued an injunction last week on a 2021 West Virginia law designed to protect women’s sports. 

In a 2-1 ruling delivered Wednesday by the court, the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals reissued an injunction against a law that sought to limit the participation of gender-confused students in elementary, high school, and collegiate girls’ sports.

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The law further defines biological sex based on one’s anatomy at birth and holds that “Classification of teams according to biological sex is necessary to promote equal athletic opportunities for the female sex,” as LifeSiteNews previously reported 

The ruling followed a motion to place an injunction on the law after U.S. District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin rescinded a previous injunction that he issued on the law, recognizing its constitutionality. 

Goodwin placed the original injunction on the law in July 2021 after the American Civil Liberties Union’s (ACLU)’s West Virginia chapter, as well as lawyers from Lambda Legal and the Cooley Law Firm, filed a lawsuit on behalf of a gender-confused 11-year-old boy identified as Becky Pepper-Jackson, after officials at Pepper-Jackson’s school cited the law when denying his wish to participate in a cross country running program. The suit claimed that Pepper-Jackson’s exclusion violated Title IX as well as the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. 

The ruling comes as the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is set to rehear arguments from a lawsuit filed on behalf of female runners against the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) for allegedly forcing them to compete against biological males that identified as female. 

Mandatory inclusion of gender-confused individuals (or people who merely claim to be the opposite gender) in opposite-sex sports is billed as a matter of sensitivity and respect for perceived “gender identity.” But critics warn that indulging so-called “transgender” athletes in this way undermines the original rational basis for having sex-specific athletics in the first place, thereby depriving female athletes of recognition and professional or academic opportunities. Scientific research affirms that physiology gives males distinct athletic advantages that cannot be fully negated by hormone suppression. 

In a 2019 paper published by the Journal of Medical Ethics, New Zealand researchers found that “healthy young men [do] not lose significant muscle mass (or power) when their circulating testosterone levels were reduced to (below International Olympic Committee guidelines) for 20 weeks,” and “indirect effects of testosterone” on factors such as bone structure, lung volume, and heart size “will not be altered by hormone therapy”; therefore, “the advantage to transwomen [biological men] afforded by the [International Olympic Committee] guidelines is an intolerable unfairness.” 

Conservatives also note that forcing women and girls to share intimate facilities, such as showers and lockers, with men and boys violates their privacy, subjects them to needless emotional stress, and gives potential male predators a viable pretext to enter female bathrooms or lockers by simply claiming transgender status, regardless of whether they are even actually dysphoric. 

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In recent years, numerous states have enacted policies banning public institutions from forcing women and girls to share intimate facilities or sex-specific athletic programs with males. Last week, the Kansas House of Representatives passed a bill that would bar biological males from women’s sports with two votes shy of a veto-proof majority.