Some athletes are fuming about what was to be hailed as one of the LGBT community’s most pioneering moments in sports. A transgender woman broke four national records, becoming the first winner of the international women’s weightlifting title.
39-year-old Laurel Hubbard was born a male named Gavin Hubbard. That’s the name he competed under in the men’s powerlifting division before she transitioned in her mid-30s.
Some professional athletes are pissed by the decision to include a transgender who used to be a male in women’s divisions. However, president of the Olympic Weightlifting New Zealand, Garry Marshall, says it’s not against the rules for her to “compete against women as a transgender.”
“We have to follow the policy of the International Olympic Committee and the International Weightlifting Federation,” Marshall said. “They do not acknowledge in any way the gender identity of an athlete other than male or female; they’re not described as transgender.”
The inclusion of transgenders in women’s athletic competitions has fueled national debate over its fairness.
In February, a 17-year-old female wrestler who is transitioning into a male beat out a field of teenage girls win the state wrestling championship.
Meanwhile, Twitter reacted to Laurel Hubbard’s weightlifting championship with its usual snarky humor.