House passes anti-trans sports bill


The Texas House approved legislation on Thursday that would restrict transgender student athlete participation in school sports, clearing a notable hurdle for supporters of the measure after similar legislation sailed through the Senate and stalled in the House three times prior this year.

House Bill 25, authored by state Rep. Valoree Swanson, R-Spring, passed with a 76-54 vote. Before Thursday’s vote, House Speaker Dade Phelan signaled that the House would have enough votes to pass the restrictive sports legislation. The bill will now head to the Senate, where it is expected to pass.

Under HB 25, student athletes in K-12 public schools would be required to compete on sports teams that correspond with the sex listed on their birth certificate received at or near the time of their birth. The legislation singles out transgender children who would be prohibited from participating on sports teams that match their gender identity.

HB 25 would not allow recognition of these legally modified birth certificates unless changes were made because of a clerical error. It’s not clear though how it will be determined if a birth certificate has been legally modified or not. According to the UIL, the process for checking student birth certificates is left up to schools and districts, not the UIL.

Transgender advocates and parents of transgender children have argued HB 25 unfairly targets children who may see sports as a refuge. And they note that bills such as HB 25 and others that have targeted transgender children this year — such as legislation that limits gender-affirming care — have already inflicted a mental toll on youth and families.

See here and here for the background. I don’t have anything new to say. This is an atrocity, it has already done a great deal of harm, and the most likely outcome, at least in the foreseeable future, is for athletes who are biologically female but who don’t look feminine enough to be harassed about their appearance. I am still waiting for the NCAA to follow through on its threatened actions, if only to serve as a reminder that this sort of crap does have some consequences. The Chron, The 19th, and Mandy Giles have more.

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10 Responses to House passes anti-trans sports bill

  1. I guess we will just have to agree to disagree. “Men” and “Women” sports were separated to help ensure fairness and prevent injuries – a person’s gender identity doesn’t change that. While I sympathize with most transgender issues, we shouldn’t help one group (transgender females born male) unjustly harm another group (girls, women). For anyone interested, please read my post on my new political blog, “”. Thanks.

  2. J says:

    This idea that transgender girls can “unjustly harm” other girls in sports is something that is commonly assumed, but which is not supported by the evidence. A scientific review published in the prominent scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science states the following Conclusion:

    “Currently, there is no direct or consistent research suggesting transgender female individuals (or male individuals) have an athletic advantage at any stage of their transition (e.g. cross-sex hormones, gender-confirming surgery) and, therefore, competitive sport policies that place restrictions on transgender people need to be considered and potentially revised.”

    Here is the link-

    So, please stop spreading misinformation that continues to harm these vulnerable trans kids.

  3. J says:

    Correction: The journal is not PNAS, it is Sports Medicine.

  4. J,

    The review you referenced was published back in 2016 (I am familiar with it). As you stated, that review merely concluded, “CURRENTLY, there is no direct or consistent research suggesting…”. Since 2016, however, there actually has been more research on the subject. For example, last month, the Sports Councils Equality Group (in Britain) concluded, “for many sports, the inclusion of transgender people, fairness and safety cannot co-exist in a single competitive model”. Their conclusion and new guidance was developed after an 18-month consultation and review of the existing research. There are other, more recent reviews, studies/relevant data as well (for examples, see links below). In short, there is a robust amount of data indicating that transgender females (born male) retain a competitive advantage over girls/women in most sports.

    And a link stating the obvious:

  5. C.L. says:

    “Men” and “Women” sports were separated to help ensure fairness and prevent injuries – a person’s gender identity doesn’t change that.”

    Were they ? So Title IX was passed to rectify the inequities of the ‘fairness and injuries’ issues ?

  6. C.L.

    Last year, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a brief opposing the participation of transgender athletes in women’s high school sports. In that case – Soule et al. v. Connecticut Association of Schools, Inc., et al., No. 3:20-cv-00201-RNC (D. Conn.) -, the DOJ said that Title IX’s prohibition of “sex” discrimination does not prohibit discrimination based on transgender status. In fact, the DOJ stated that allowing transgender athletes to participate actually violates Title IX. The Justice Department noted that physiological differences are the reason women’s sports exist, and stated depriving women of single-sex athletic competitions violated Title IX. Anyway, I’m sure this subject will bounce around in the courts until the issue is eventually decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.

    For more on the DOJ brief, please see the link below:

  7. J says:

    The point of this bill is not to protect any students, the real point of this bill is about protecting the incumbent GOPers of Texas from primary challengers. And here again we have Greg S. stepping in, carrying water for the wingnuts while claiming to be a Dem.

    And of course, last year’s DOJ was Trump’s DOJ.

  8. J,

    Believe it or not, we can disagree on many issues and still both be Democrats. Let’s let the Republicans retain all the far-right-wing nuts and recruit everyone else into the Democratic Party. If we want to win future elections, moderates and conservatives have to be welcome in the Democratic Party. Next year, Republicans will try to portray the entire Democratic Party as just a bunch of radical, left-wing socialists. Let’s prove them wrong.

  9. J says:

    Greg, the compromises you require are too much. The Democrats need to go forward, not back to a place where gay rights, reproductive rights, trans rights and climate action are all trimmed back in pursuit of some centrist pipe dream. Form your own Republican-Lite party, no one is stopping you. You can bleed off enough conservative votes to keep the crazies out of power and not get any flak for your views from within, especially as you will be the boss.

  10. J, I guess we will just have to agree to disagree. Still, I’m confident the big tent of the Democratic Party is large enough for the both of us…

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