NBC appears to have edited a picture of controversial transgender swimmer Lia Thomas.
The picture, used in coverage after Thomas dominated his competition in the NCAA finals, was altered in a manner to make Thomas appear more feminine.
I know, right? Compare and contrast… pic.twitter.com/yQq5e5KnEY
— Sandieannie (@Sandieannie1910) March 17, 2022
The airbrushed photo was used in a segment of NBC’s “Today” show on Monday.
The edit in question removed blemishes on Thomas’ face.
The biological male’s face and shoulders were also softened.
In the original photo, Thomas’ face was more angular and bony, both features more associated with male bodies than female ones.
Social media users were quick to notice that NBC used an airbrushed photo for the swimmer.
Just an even closer look….. pic.twitter.com/ym7MwqMMra
— Pi♤n○Dentℹst ???????? (@PianoDentist86) March 18, 2022
Thomas won the 500-yard NCAA Division I championship on Friday, a new high point in his rise to dominance in college women’s swimming.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recognized the second-place championship finisher, Emma Weyant, as the real winner of the title. Weyant is a Florida resident.
During an awards ceremony following Thomas’ championship win, the runners-up appeared to give the University of Pennsylvania swimmer a cold shoulder.
Three medalists celebrated to the side of Thomas, in what may amount to a protest of his inclusion in the sport.
Men possess fundamental advantages over women in a wide range of physical sports.
Men have thicker bone density and increased muscle mass, advantages that can easily give an athlete an advantage in a physical sport such as swimming.
Thomas’ rise to the top of women’s swimming has thrown the very premise of women’s sports into question, with advocates fearing that women’s sports will be destroyed by an influx of biologically male athletes.
“It means the world to be here.”
Lia Thomas spoke about swimming in the NCAA women’s championships. pic.twitter.com/aP0afVA0KE
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 18, 2022
Thomas has declined to address increasing criticism and skepticism of his place in women’s sports, telling an ESPN reporter that he tries to filter out as much of it as he can.
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