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Burgess Owens weighs in on Biden admin proposed Title IX changes: ‘It’s not feelings, it’s fairness’


The talk over transgender participation in sports activities has taken on a extra pressing which means following the Biden administration’s April proposal to broaden Title IX laws. 

The brand new guidelines would broaden the which means of intercourse discrimination to incorporate gender identification, which might forestall colleges and schools from banning transgender athletes.

President Joe Biden speaks on the College of Tampa on Feb. 9, 2023. (Joe Raedle/Getty Photographs)

Underneath the proposed laws, colleges wouldn’t be allowed to “undertake or apply a one-size-fits-all coverage that categorically bans transgender college students from collaborating on groups according to their gender identification.”

The proposal has garnered immense backlash from conservatives who see the adjustments as a step towards the destruction of girls’s sports activities. 

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Rep. Burgess Owens, R-Utah, lately spoke with Fox Information Digital concerning the proposed adjustments to Title IX, and the previous skilled athlete strongly spoke out in protection of girls’s sports activities. 

Burgess Owens testifies

Former NFL participant Burgess Owens testifies throughout a listening to on slavery reparations held by the Home Judiciary Subcommittee on the Structure, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties on June 19, 2019 in Washington, DC. The subcommittee debated the H.R. 40 invoice, which proposes a fee be fashioned to review and develop reparation proposals for African-Individuals. (Zach Gibson/Getty Photographs)

“What we’re speaking proper now’s one thing that within the historical past of the world, we’ve all understood wouldn’t be truthful,” Owens advised Fox Information Digital. “That’s what it comes right down to. It’s equity. 

“It’s not emotions, it’s equity. On the finish of the day, ladies have the fitting to really feel like they’re going to get on the sphere of competitors and pretty compete. Not in opposition to boys, not in opposition to males. Everyone knows the science is there, that there’s a huge distinction. It’s the best way God created us.” 

Over the previous a number of years, the transgender debate has grow to be one of many fiercest of the tradition wars.

The talk has entered the sphere of athletics, with transgender athletes similar to Lia Thomas collaborating in ladies’s sports activities. 

Riley Gaines and Lia Thomas

Riley Gaines, now a spokeswoman for the Unbiased Girls’s Discussion board, famously tied Lia Thomas for fifth place within the 200 Freestyle finals on the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships final yr.  (Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports activities)

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Thomas, who competed on the lads’s swim staff at UPenn for 3 seasons earlier than transitioning, grew to become the primary transgender athlete to win a Division I nationwide championship in any sport, profitable the 500-yard freestyle in March 2022. 

And whereas many states have responded by enacting bans on transgender participation in sports activities, the proposed adjustments to Title IX would supersede these legal guidelines. 

“The federal civil rights legislation is the legislation of the land and we’d be keen to make sure its full satisfaction in each college neighborhood across the nation,” a senior official for the Division of Schooling mentioned in April, in response to ABC Information. 

Since its inception in 1972, Title IX has allowed ladies’s sports activities to be on an equal taking part in subject with males’s sports activities. 

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Due partly to Title IX, ladies’s athletics have seen an uptick in recognition. The ladies’s faculty basketball Remaining 4 in April was a large hit – arguably garnering extra consideration than the lads’s event – with a document 9.9 million viewers tuning in for the sport between Iowa and LSU. 

Caitlin Clark dribbles

Alexis Morris #45 of the LSU Woman Tigers defends in opposition to Caitlin Clark #22 of the Iowa Hawkeyes through the fourth quarter through the 2023 NCAA Girls’s Basketball Event championship recreation at American Airways Middle on April 02, 2023 in Dallas, Texas. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Photographs)

If organic males are allowed to compete in ladies’s sports activities, Owens believes the progress in ladies’s sports activities will likely be undone. 

“There isn’t a query, and nobody will ever doubt or debate, you carry boys in women basketball [and] women will mainly be eradicated,” Owens advised Fox Information Digital. “You carry boys into volleyball … there’s a purpose why the web for ladies is seven inches shorter than for boys, for males. There’s a purpose for that as a result of we perceive what’s truthful and what the bounds could be.”

When requested what the following steps are within the course of, Owens mentioned he believes the adjustments to Title IX will likely be stopped in courtroom. 

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“We’re going to begin wanting into laws, now that we perceive how far this could go, that’s going to place Congress again into management,” Owens mentioned. “There ought to by no means be a time when an administration comes by with these completely different guidelines, and government orders, to drive and switch our nation in a completely completely different manner. We’re a republic democracy. Which means we the individuals management our future … Not bureaucrats who can write guidelines and alter all the things. 

Burgess Owens testifies during a hearing

Former NFL participant Burgess Owens testifies throughout a listening to on slavery reparations held by the Home Judiciary Subcommittee on the Structure, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties on June 19, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Zach Gibson/Getty Photographs)

“The rule that they’re taking a look at – to start with it is going to go to courtroom, I’m fairly certain it is going to be stopped – however extra importantly, we’re going to begin taking a look at laws as a physique to verify they will’t contend to attempt to legislate as bureaucrats.”

Conservatives have taken their very own steps with a view to forestall organic males from competing in opposition to ladies, with the Home passing the “Safety of Girls and Women in Sports activities Act” final week. 

Underneath the invoice, instructional establishments that obtain Title IX funding wouldn’t be allowed to allow organic male athletes to “take part in an athletic program or exercise that’s designed for ladies or women.” It holds that the intercourse of an athlete is outlined solely by their “reproductive biology and genetics at delivery.”

President Biden has mentioned he would veto the invoice if it had been to reach at his desk.

“It’s mainly good widespread sense. It’s primarily based on biology. It’s not primarily based on emotions,” Owens advised Fox Information Digital when requested in regards to the invoice.  

referee holds the game ball during the national championship game

A referee holds the sport ball through the recreation between the LSU Woman Tigers and the Iowa Hawkeyes through the 2023 NCAA Girls’s Basketball Event Nationwide Championship at American Airways Middle on April 2, 2023 in Dallas, Texas.  (C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Images through Getty Photographs)

“I don’t care what you name your self. For those who’re a man, compete with different guys and women compete with different women. It additionally makes certain that guys can’t go into women’ bogs. The fundamental issues that we’ve at all times understood and brought with no consideration. What this Title IX [proposed changes] does is say ‘Primarily based on my emotions, I can do something I need to, simply say I’m trans, and I’m okay.’ 

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“It shouldn’t work that manner. Be trans, it’s okay. No drawback with that however respect ladies. For those who’re a man, do the issues that guys are requested to do. Go to guys’ bogs, compete in opposition to different guys, and work as onerous as you may. For those who beat them, superior. For those who don’t, that’s the best way it really works. That’s the best way competitors [and] meritocracy has at all times labored.” 

The Biden administration’s proposed adjustments to Title IX would enable some leeway for colleges to “restrict transgender college students’ participation.”

“The proposed rule would supply colleges with a framework for creating eligibility standards that protects college students from being denied equal athletic alternative, whereas giving colleges the flexibleness to develop their very own participation insurance policies,” the U.S. Division of Schooling wrote when asserting the proposal. 

Fox Information Peter Kasperowicz contributed to this report

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