Soren Stark-Chessa, a trans high school sophomore in Maine, recently faced backlash after dominating the girl’s race competition. Here’s the full story.
She Competed in Boy’s and Girl’s Competition
Stark-Chessa, a student at the private Maine Coast Waldorf School, made headlines last year when she participated in the boys’ 5k cross-country competition.
Fast forward to this year, and she’s now competing in the girls’ category, where she’s achieved an impressive fourth-place ranking.
172nd in the District
As a freshman, she competed in the boys’ category, ranking 172nd in the district.
Over the past year, Stark-Chessa made the decision to transition and is now competing in the girls’ competitions.
Way to Cheat, Bro!
However, her recent race at the Maine XC Festival of Champions was filled with controversy.
As Stark-Chessa crossed the finish line with a time of 5 minutes and 51.3 seconds, a voice from the crowd shouted, “Way to cheat, bro!”
Several critics argued that biological differences can give trans athletes an advantage over their cisgender counterparts.
It Is Not Fair
One female runner said, “It is not fair to a female who has trained hard. Males are biologically faster than females, with testosterone. They need to run under their biological gender.”
A concerned mother from Winterport, Maine, Katherine Collins, expressed her belief that the playing field should be leveled.
She argued that males, due to biological disparities, hold a natural advantage over their female counterparts.
The Stark Contrast
Collins further pointed out a stark statistical contrast, stating that the top-ranked female high school runner in all of New England would only be 47th among high school boys in Maine.
Unfair Competitive Advantage
A physician and father of two athletes in Maine’s high school cross-country competitions joined the chorus of concern.
He said, “If a boy competing in a sporting event were found to be using performance-enhancing drugs, he would be disqualified due to the presumption of unfair competitive advantage.
If, instead, that same boy chose to compete as a girl. He would not only not be disqualified due to his enormous presumptive competitive advantage, he would be lauded, feted, and applauded.”
Grossest of Injustices
“For the boys, it would be tragic, for it teaches them things that simply do not apply outside of the very narrow time and place in which we currently reside.
For the girls, it is the grossest of injustices in every conceivable way because it forces them to participate in, and to some extent accept, something which is manifestly false. They must, like it or not, participate in the lie,” he added.
Proud of Stark-Chessa
However, Stark-Chessa’s school athletics director, Susan Sonntag, said that they were “proud” of all their students.
She said, “We support all our students at Maine Coast Waldorf School, and are proud that our students are given the opportunity to participate in all of our school programs.”
Girls Need to Refuse to Participate
Several social media users expressed their thoughts on the incident.
One Twitter user wrote, “I sympathize, but I am starting not to care. There is such a simple solution; the girls need to, as a group, refuse to participate in ANY competition where a man competes. It would immediately make worldwide news.”
“Call Out This Actual Male”
Another user added, “Way to cheat, bro,” which is what is being yelled in the first two shouts. But even the way to go “bro” is indicative of the intent to call out this actual male.”
This Is Beyond Belief
A third user commented, “How this can be applauded by parents of girls whose prospects are destroyed is beyond belief.
The inevitable result will be the end of women’s participation in sports. Why train for years when you can have no hope of winning?”
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