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A female track and field athlete from Idaho State University who lost five times to transgender competitors has called on Lia Thomas’ rivals to speak out against the Pennsylvania trans swimmer.
University of Pennsylvania’s Thomas broke records in the 200-metre freestyle and 500-metre freestyle, which sparked controversy amid the trans debate in sports.
The 22-year-old UPenn swimmer, who was born a man and transitioned into a woman, broke her silence and insisted it was fair for her to compete.
However, Thomas’ involvement has been met with fierce backlash from angry parents of rival swimmers, who sent a letter to the NCAA demanding it changes the controversial rules.
Track and cross-country athlete Madison Kenyon filed a motion in Idaho State Court in 2020 -- along with teammate Mary Kate Marshall -- calling for the US state’s Fairness in Women's Sports Act to be upheld.
Idaho’s Fairness in Women's Sports Act was signed into law in March 2020 and was the first legislation in the US to prohibit trans women from competing in women’s sports in schools.
Speaking to Fox News, Kenyon urged the female athletes in Pennsylvania who competed against Thomas to “speak up” and “don't let anyone silence” them.
A college athlete spoke out about a transgender athlete dominating women’s swimming, saying “it’s extremely deflating."— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) December 22, 2021
This is not fair to women athletes who have spent their lives training. pic.twitter.com/9Dren8Dzum
“The fact that that's still happening, that women are still losing to biological males in their own sport, shows why we need more female athletes to speak up about this,” she said.
“I just want to say to the female athletes in Pennsylvania, don't let anyone silence you.
“Speak up, tell the NCAA, your athletic directors and your coaches that you want fair competition, because speaking up about this is nowhere near as scary as it seems, and the amount of support is overwhelming.”
Thomas had previously competed as a male swimmer at UPenn before transitioning.
A UPenn female swimmer, who wished to remain anonymous, told OutKick that “pretty much everyone” had spoken out against Thomas’ participation in women’s sports.
“Pretty much everyone individually has spoken to our coaches about not liking this. Our coach [Mike Schnur] just really likes winning,” she said.
“He’s like most coaches. I think secretly everyone just knows it’s the wrong thing to do.”
She added: “When the whole team is together, we have to be like, ‘Oh my gosh, go Lia, that’s great, you’re amazing.’ It’s very fake.”
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