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Riley Gaines Erupts As Trans High Schooler Wins State Title

This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak, UltimateNewswire and others. To learn more about syndication opportunities, visit About Us.
Riley Gaines

Riley Gaines, a former collegiate swimmer and women’s sports advocate, has stirred controversy by criticizing a transgender high school runner from Spokane.

Girls 400 Dash

The runner won a state title in the Girls 400 Dash 2A championship in Washington state.

Veronica Garcia

Veronica Garcia, a transgender high school athlete from Washington, participated in the girls’ 400-meter dash, emerging victorious and claiming the title of Washington state champion in that event.

Impressive time

Garcia clocked an impressive time of 55.75 seconds, outstripping the second-place finisher’s time by a full second, as recorded on the Pacific Northwest Track and Field Officials’ track scoreboard. In response to Garcia’s win, Riley Gaines took to social media platform X to express her thoughts. “Once again, the unexpected has occurred,” Gaines said.

Podium ceremony

During the post-race podium ceremony on Saturday, the athletes who secured second and third place were observed taking part in the event. As per the policy set by the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association, all athletes are entitled to compete in activities that align with their gender identity or the gender they consistently express.

Olympic level

“For the Olympic level, the elite level, I’d say probably two years is more realistic than one year,” Dr. Timothy Roberts, director of the adolescent medicine training program at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, said. “At one year, the trans women, on average, still have an advantage over the cis women.”

Medical or legal criteria

While no specific medical or legal criteria were provided, students do retain the right to appeal if any concerns regarding eligibility surface, as stated in the WIAA policy.

Proposed legislation

Despite proposed legislation in the state concerning transgender girls in female sports, it has not been approved.

British Journal of Sports Medicine

A study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine in 2021 highlighted that transgender women continue to hold an edge over cisgender women even after undergoing a year of hormone therapy.

West Virginia

Recently, five middle school girls in West Virginia were barred from competing in a track and field event after protesting and refusing to participate in an event due to a transgender athlete’s inclusion in the meet.

Middle school girls

Riley Gaines commended a group of middle school girls who withdrew from a track and field event as they refused to compete against a biological male athlete.

The students

Praising the students for setting a standard, Gaines acknowledged their protest at the competition in West Virginia. Despite facing backlash, Gaines highlighted the support received by the young athletes for their stance.

Pretty overwhelmed

“So have you guys felt pretty overwhelmed by the support that you’ve received since taking a stand?” Gaines asked.

Those people

“I think it was way more than we expected,” one of the student-athletes responded. “I think we kind of gave a voice for those people that were scared and they’re not scared anymore, so I’m excited about that.”

Terrible precedent

“I could not be more proud of these girls,” Gaines said. “Again, 13, 14 years old, they’re in middle school, yet they’re the ones who are forced to be the adults in the room to advocate for their own rights to quality opportunity, safety and privacy, which were once ensured by Title IX, but now, of course, are under threat and which were once ensured by the law here in West Virginia. But now, with the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals’ ruling, it’s all under threat, which sets a terrible precedent.”

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