UPenn's Disregard for Title IX Takes Opportunities Away From Women Athletes | Opinion

Shame on the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn). As National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) swimmer Lia Thomas speaks out for the first time about "transitioning" from male to female sports, one of Thomas' teammates is telling a different story.

In an interview with Good Morning America, Thomas claimed that male athletes participating in female sports "are not a threat to women's sports" and announced a goal of competing in the Olympic trials in women's swimming.

Thomas' teammate, who wants to remain anonymous for fear of retribution, tells a different story. The teammate revealed UPenn officials supported Thomas because "Lia's performance helps the University of Pennsylvania swim team."

"If you even bring up the fact that Lia's swimming might not be fair, you are immediately shut down as being called a hateful person, or transphobic," said the swimmer in What is a Woman?, a new documentary by Matt Walsh.

"Lia obviously helps us do better [but] the feeling of winning doesn't feel as good anymore because it feels tainted," the anonymous student admits.

This female swimmer's rights as a woman are being violated by the University of Pennsylvania. For this reason, Concerned Women for America (CWA) has filed a civil rights complaint under Title IX with the U.S. Department of Education against UPenn. We demand answers for the young women whose dreams have just been crushed by a 6'1" male-bodied athlete with every physiological advantage.

June 23, 2022, marks the 50th anniversary of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. It was passed to give women and girls equal opportunities in education and athletics. Here's what the law says:

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Title IX required schools to have female-only athletic programs so women could compete against other women in their own sports and receive scholarships and other opportunities in educational programs once reserved only for men.

Lia Thomas UPenn swim team
CAMBRIDGE, MA - FEBRUARY 19: University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas places her hand over her heart during the playing of the National Anthem at the 2022 Ivy League Womens Swimming and Diving Championships at Blodgett Pool on February 19, 2022 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Kathryn Riley/Getty Images

The law gave women and girls new opportunities in education and athletics that previously had been denied them. That purpose remains true today.

UPenn grossly violates Title IX by allowing Lia Thomas to compete against female athletes.

No male, however, he identifies, will ever shed his XY chromosomes, menstruate or give birth. Thomas' frame towers over teammates. Male bodies have larger hearts and lungs and higher hemoglobin levels that enable the body to oxygenate muscles faster. Science tells us males have bigger bones and muscle capacity, and larger feet and hands—a particular advantage in swimming. They also have a greater amount of fast-twitch muscle fibers, allowing for greater explosive power off the blocks.

These facts are biology, not bigotry. But biology matters little to the reckless NCAA and colleges like UPenn which long for money and championships, having little concern for women's interests.

After a half century of maintaining a separate category for women's sports in civil rights law under Title IX, women are being pushed aside, again. The law that has benefited generations of passionate and promising girl athletes has been turned on its head by the NCAA's insistence that women do not have a right to fair competition of their own, without male interference.

In 1972, only about 300,000 young women and girls played college and high school sports in the U.S. Only 2 percent of college athletic budgets went to women's sports programs, and athletic scholarships for women were all but unheard of.

Today, there are some 3.5 million girls in high school sports—more than a tenfold increase since the 1970s. Girls now make up almost 43 percent of high school athletes. In 2020, there were more than 222,000 collegiate women competing in the NCAA, making up 44 percent of college student athletes.

All these gains are in jeopardy today. Women are losing their opportunities to the desires of a few males who subjectively feel themselves to be women inside. And it goes beyond athletics, too. Women are demeaned every time "Woman of the Year" or "First Woman" honors go to a male.

According to our elites, males are apparently better than females at everything, including being a woman.

Penny Nance is the CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, the largest grassroots women's organization in the country.

The views expressed in this article are the writer's own.