Olympian legend Caitlyn Jenner on Monday berated the “woke Washington state” for instituting policies that allow a biologically male student to dominate female competitors, despite falling 72nd against males before beating the all-female team accession.
“We have to keep it fair,” Jenner, a Fox News contributor, told America Reports. “This problem isn’t going away, but I really think Washington state needs to make it a little bit tougher. You can’t easily identify yourself [as transgender] and then compete against the women.”
Jenner made the comment in response to a transgender Seattle Academy sophomore crushing her new female competition with two wins, including one in a conference championship, and three top-2 finishes in eight races this season. The schoolgirl’s participation in the women’s sport has sparked outrage from parents and competitors, who point out that the 5,000-meter runner finished 72nd in a boys’ cross-country event Race just a year before joining the girls team.
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Earlier this month, the Seattle student finished 18th with a time of 20:31.3. Had the sophomore competed in the boys’ division, her time would have given her 145th place.
Jenner said she blames “awakened Washington State” policies for female athletes being denied scholarships and other opportunities by biologically male competitors.
In 2007, the WIAA adopted the International Olympic Committee’s position that transgender people could participate in sports in their newly assigned gender as long as they had surgery and had been on hormones for at least two years. Eleven years later, the association then updated its stance, saying that a male-to-female student “must undergo one calendar year of medically documented testosterone suppression therapy to be eligible to participate on a female team.”
However, last year the WIAA removed all medical screening requirements, stating that athletes may participate in activities “in a manner consistent with their gender identity.”
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“That means you just identify as trans and you can compete on the women’s team,” Jenner said. “Well, they made this rule because they thought it was more in line with Washington state antidiscrimination laws that they had out there. I was going for it from the start…like this fourth-place woman trying to make it to the state championships. But there is one trans athlete in the top three that doesn’t allow her to do that, fulfill her dreams, maybe get a scholarship later. We have to keep it fair.
Jenner said her position on the issue is consistent with her stance on transgender swimmer Lia Thomas, adding that both Thomas and the Seattle coed were just “playing within the rules.”
“But,” she said, “they have to change the rules and on the international swimming scene they have done it.”
The WIAA released a statement to Fox News Digital noting the league’s “gender identity eligibility rules.”
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“The WIAA gender identity rules, in place for more than 13 years, follow Washington state nondiscrimination laws that protect unrestricted access to athletic activities for students,” the statement said. “Federal law under Title IX also requires equal treatment for all participants, regardless of gender identity. Additionally, these policies reflect the association’s core value of maximizing participation in education-based athletics that provides students with the safest, most meaningful opportunities to engage and represent their school.”
“The WIAA’s role is to support all member schools, as well as all student-athletes they represent, and the association will continue to do so,” the statement said.
Fox News’ Ryan Morik contributed to this report.