As US Focuses on Outbreak, Barr's DOJ Weighs In on Trans Athletes
As the full powers of the federal government are being deployed to stop the spread of the coronavirus, Attorney General William Barr is letting female athletes know he stands with them as they are forced to compete against “transgender” athletes on the field of sport in Connecticut.
Barr announced last week the U.S. Justice Department is now involved in a federal civil rights lawsuit, which seeks to block biologically male athletes in Connecticut from competing as girls.
The DOJ filed a legal document Tuesday in Hartford siding with the Alliance Defending Freedom — which is representing three high school girls in a lawsuit to stop transgender athletes from competing in girls sports.
The Associated Press reported Barr signed a statement of interest Tuesday siding against a 7-year-old policy of the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference allowing biological males to compete against girls.
The DOJ document described transgender girls as “biological males.”
“Under CIAC’s interpretation of Title IX, however, schools may not account for the real physiological differences between men and women. Instead, schools must have certain biological males — namely, those who publicly identify as female — compete against biological females,” the DOJ stated.
“In so doing, CIAC deprives those women of the single-sex athletic competitions that are one of the marquee accomplishments of Title IX,” the statement added.
Forbes reported the CIAC policy was enacted to comply with state law requiring schools to prioritize gender identity of students over biological sex.
Proponents of the lawsuit say the current transgender policy puts many girls at a physical disadvantage, as teen boys are generally naturally stronger and faster than girls.
Forbes reported Connecticut high school track and field athletes Selina Soule, Chelsea Mitchell and Alanna Smith filed the lawsuit to ban transgender athletes from competing against them.
The girls state in their legal filing that they have been “deprived of victories, state titles and scholarship opportunities because they were forced to compete with transgender athletes,” Forbes reported.
The American Civil Liberties Union, which is representing transgender athletes Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood in the lawsuit, criticized Barr and the DOJ for becoming involved in the lawsuit during the country’s coronavirus pandemic.
“This is what the Attorney General is prioritizing while 12 people died last night from COVID-19 related complications at the hospital near my house,” ACLU attorney Chase Strangio wrote on Twitter.
“When we let the gov’t police our bodies like this, they will always leave ‘undesirable’ bodies to die.”
This is what the Attorney General is prioritizing while 12 people died last night from COVID-19 related complications at the hospital near my house. When we let the gov’t police our bodies like this, they will always leave “undesirable” bodies to die. pic.twitter.com/VCKuN0STCQ
— Chase Strangio (@chasestrangio) March 26, 2020
“Our clients are two high school seniors who are just trying to enjoy their final track season of high school and who now have to contend with the federal government arguing against their right to equal educational opportunities,” Strangio told the AP on Wednesday.
Strangio is described by Forbes as a “trans man.”
The ACLU also criticized Barr on Twitter.
“We have a message to lawmakers and others attacking trans students like Terry: STOP ATTACKING TRANS YOUTH,” the group wrote.
We have a message to lawmakers and others attacking trans students like Terry: STOP ATTACKING TRANS YOUTH. pic.twitter.com/9PXxCTADpl
— ACLU (@ACLU) February 12, 2020
The legal battle is being waged as athletic competitions nationwide are suspended as part of efforts to of the coronavirus.
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