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Posts posted by J.C.MacSwell

  1. 15 minutes ago, swansont said:

    That’s the wrong approach, though, if you investigate the distinctions between cis men and cis women. The investigation should be the distinctions between trans women and cis women.

    That’s what one should investigate.

    There is no known difference in athletic potential, or reason to believe there is, caused by any XY athlete's choice to change gender.


  2. 10 minutes ago, zapatos said:

    Agreed. Things will change over time, and we should not assume that testosterone level is the only factor that can go into making competition equitable and ensuring XX athletes can remain competitive. Throughout this thread I have tried to envision a multifaceted approach evolving over time as we learn more.

    I think testosterone levels alone will have a limited ability to encompass all of women's sports. Testosterone probably have a larger impact where you have individual sports and reliance on muscle mass (e.g. weight lifting)  and less of an impact on team sports that rely less on muscle mass (e.g. synchronized swimming). You wouldn't even have to check testosterone levels (theoretically) for weight lifting if you introduced handicapping. For instance, add 'x' pounds to the bar for the transgender woman to accomplish the same lift as a cisgender woman.

    Right. Those are the types of solutions that could be used where possible, at least for the intersex, without requiring them to take unwanted treatments if they wish to compete.

    I wonder if Laurel Hubbard would have preferred that, in whole or in part, rather than being forced to conform (forced if she wished to compete as a female) to an arbitrary testosterone target.

    ...and if her only threat was to also get a medal without displacing anyone...how much more welcome might she have felt.

  3. 13 hours ago, zapatos said:

    You said XX cannot be competitive if they must compete with XY without serious restrictions on trans women. I disagreed and cited the ratio as my reasoning. As far as I can tell we were both looking at a snapshot in time. That is, we are talking about now. 

    I don't mind talking about how/if XX can remain competitive if that ratio changes. While that ratio may change in the future I am also sure in the future we'll be factoring in changes to the science of hormone levels, transitioning, muscle mass, competitive classes, development of handicapping systems, ratio of trans vs cis allowed on the field at once, equitable funding for training, and all the other ideas people come up with on how to allow everyone to compete equitably.

    As I have mentioned many times in this thread, right from the early on in it, you need to be able to anticipate the results of any rules you might make.

    I don't know how many times I have pointed this out to Swansont when he keeps asking "where are they?" while citing current low numbers and ignoring obvious evidence that XY athletes have known advantages.

    As they move away from testosterone targets, as they should, the numbers will surely go up... as society becomes more accepting of transgenders, as it should, the numbers surely will go up...

    ...unless of course there are other rules in place to prevent it.


  4. 3 hours ago, zapatos said:

    When did I say "questionable testosterone targets" is a healthy goal? When did I say "unfair social stigmas" was healthy?

    When did I say 2200 to 1 should be maintainable?

    Perhaps you can answer the questions I asked of you.

    You said my concerns were not justified citing the current ratio as 2200 to 1, did you not?




  5. 2 minutes ago, zapatos said:


    Even if the answer was 100%, the cisgenders outnumber the transgenders 2200 to 1. How is that one person stopping those 2200 from being competitive? If I'm competing in the Pac-10 and you are competing in the ACC, how have you stopped me from being competitive?

    ...with questionable testosterone targets in place to maintain that? With unfair social stigmas toward transgenders to maintain that?

    Explain exactly how either is a healthy goal if you believe 2200 to 1 should be maintainable.

  6. 4 minutes ago, zapatos said:

    I understand why you think there would need to be very serious restriction on XY athletes, but it feels to me as if you are overstating the impact on XX athletes. 

    After a short search I found that there were perhaps 100 trans women competing in NCAA sports, compared to about 226,000 women competing in NCAA Women's Championship Sports.



    Am I?

    How many of those (bolded) are competing without serious restrictions? (I'm fairly certain the answer is none, even if they've gone through HRT in the past, any requirement to which is a serious restriction in itself)

    Much of the debate is about whether the restrictions are enough (or overly onerous) to make for fair competition.

    There should be no debate as to whether the current restrictions are healthy. Many on the many sides of the debate don't believe they are healthy, and certainly none of the methods used to reduce testosterone to target levels are considered to be without risk.

    Many here would seem to be satisfied if testosterone targets were continued to be used and adjusted over time. Attempt to find some compromise between inclusion and athlete health. When transgender athletes succeed, or fail, what exactly will have been tested?

  7. 1 hour ago, CharonY said:

    Here, you are somewhat wrong. You should check back on JCM's post regarding the definition and binary nature of biological sex and perhaps also the link I provided that questions some of the tenets there. It is important to note that an evolutionary/biological system cannot be mapped exclusively to humans, it has to cover biology as we know it.

    Thus, in the evolutionary view, the common definition is based around anisogamy, which means the different in types of gametes produced in a population. Here, we have a binary distinction (large gametes like ova, small gametes like sperm). The physical build of the producers does not play into it, as there is no direct connection between types of ovaries and a particular build, for example. In fact, some species change over their lifetime whether and what kind of gametes are being produced (a specific example that was provided in the prior discussion). Therefore, although the Goymann et al claim that biological sex is binary, they do state that 

    In other words, if we use it as a condition to categorize each and every individual, we are in fact misusing the concept of biological sex.

    And this goes back to the issue that in the society we have learned to conflate concepts like gender and biological sex to a degree that the latter is often also applied outside of the precise valid scope. To some degree it is inevitable, as many areas (especially medical sciences) obviously have a human-centric view, which kinds of ignores the broader scope of biology. But if we want to talk about biology and especially evolution, we are forced to be more precise about it (it is a bit like trying to apply classical physics to quantum phenomena, at some point it becomes wildly inaccurate). The challenge here is that science here runs counter to intuition.

    Right. But at this point in the science of biology I believe that for the human species, 99+% of us can be clearly divided into biologically male or biologically female regardless of more overlap in secondary sex characteristics, and that division is so significant with regard to physical sports that there are demonstrable differences between the top performances of the two groups, in the range of 6-12% in many events.

    With gender, as we now define the term gender, no such clear division for top performers exists, notwithstanding medical science's ability to intervene.

    Essentially this means that unless XX athletes are given their own space, they cannot be competitive at elite level without very serious restrictions put on any inclusion of XY athletes.

  8. On 8/6/2023 at 9:16 AM, dimreepr said:

    Well for one, the elite levels are pushing the envelope within the chosen field of play, so that's where the best data is; let's not forget that the elite level is, by definition, designed to route out the outlier's of human physiology. (edit, which we're happy to celebrate, as long as the women don't look like men) 

    I hope you don't think this question in any way turns the tables, if anything it puts more pressure on you to come back with at least one reason why my reason/ing is wrong?


    No. This is a fair point. However, there is nothing to stop transgenders, or anyone else, competing against top level females. If the data is the goal it can be gained from experiments outside of and with no risk to standard top level competition.

  9. On 8/5/2023 at 12:18 PM, swansont said:

    I’m not sure why you think I didn’t understand the context. On the contrary, I think perhaps you don’t understand the context of transgender bans occurring in the US. It’s not just telling kids they can’t compete. Almost a third of transgender youth live in states that have banned gender-affirming care.

    I certainly don't understand how US states limiting access to access to health care justifies any XY inclusion in XX sports

    Why do you feel international sports organizations should take that into account?

  10. 3 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

    My point was, if you  sufficiently restrict your vision, put blinkers on, everything 'looks' hunky-dory.

    So you believe my describing womens elite sports as having "worked fairly well" was too positive?

    How would you prefer I describe it?

  11. 4 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

    Fuck the talented elites, like Semenya then.



    5 hours ago, J.C.MacSwell said:

    Edit: Though the onus of proof would be on the intersex athlete, in the grey area where possible they could still be accommodated as discussed much earlier in this thread...as I suggested Caster Semenya might share a podium spot if she was unable to prove no XY advantage, and no XY advantage could be reasonably proven.



    Feel free to get my position straight at any time though.


    2 minutes ago, mistermack said:

    My words were correctly chosen, and no clarification is needed, the meaning is perfectly clear. 

    And it's hugely amusing, that the only way you can claim that men are NOT banned, is to agree that transgender athletes are indeed men. You're tying yourself up in ridiculous knots. 

    When one argues that because the intersex exist then sex is non binary so the non intersex should be free to choose the binary division of their choice...one is already tied up in knots...

  13. Just now, StringJunky said:

    You mean those that were judged to be women... and the natural outliers excluded, cue the present-day furore with Caster Semenya, their contemporaries and others preceding them throughout elite sport history.

    Exactly. Not perfect but worked fairly well.

  14. 1 hour ago, swansont said:

    I’m not sure why you think I didn’t understand the context. On the contrary, I think perhaps you don’t understand the context of transgender bans occurring in the US. It’s not just telling kids they can’t compete. Almost a third of transgender youth live in states that have banned gender-affirming care.

    Banned as in there are no legal options. An actual ban. In that context, men are not banned from competing. They are restricted, in some cases, in which leagues they might compete. But they are not banned from competing, which means they would not be allowed to compete at all.

    The claim is BS. It relies on the fallacy of equivocation. Do you really want to defend it?

    Transgender women have been participating in women’s sports for a number of years. Women’s sports exists. The claim is BS as well.

    When you quote someone it is their intended context that matters. You don't get to twist it.

    3 hours ago, StringJunky said:

    That plays into the oft-unspoken exclusionary feminist trope of separate but equal. That didn't work very well dealing with racism in the 20th century... did it?

    It certainly did not.

    The pursuit of separate but equal did work fairly well for women that wanted their own elite sports though.

    Not perfect, but well enough that many feel it's worth protecting.


  15. 45 minutes ago, iNow said:

    It important IMO to recall the broader context in which this discussion is taking place. Right wing populism is spreading across the world. Voters seem in greater numbers to be supporting fascist tendencies. Books are being banned from schools and neighbors are bloodying each other over simple differences in policy. Racism is up. Jewish community members are being attacked. Behavioral norms are being ignored while untraceable guns and homemade ammunition are being found at insane levels.

    And also, trans people are being targeted and attacked. Extreme violence. Their elected leaders are using them as scapegoats, setting mobs against them. Telling them which bathroom they are and are not allowed to use despite each of us having unisex bathrooms in each of our homes. Doctors are being attacked for caring for these patients, and schools are adding to ostracization by banning them from sports… or even TALKING about these subjects in states like mine and Florida… 1st amendment free speech rights be damned!

    Violence, extreme depression, lack of acceptance, and unacceptably high levels of suicide rule the day. It is this backdrop against which we’re discussing some elite sports categories, and I’m here advocating for acceptance and inclusion.

    Perhaps you see my position as extreme, but then again perhaps more people who think like me need to speak up in support of what’s right to counter the very one-sided nature of the conversation happening on this subject. I used to speak with similar passion in support of gay marriage, and climate change, and evolution… and thankfully I’ve been on the right side of history every time.

    I encourage you to join me and others here simply saying, “workable solutions to this obviously exist… let’s start with that as our premise instead of starting with bans.” You thankfully are already open to this, but please recall that you’re also not the only person participating in all of this… especially against the aforementioned societal backdrop. 

    I'm not going to help you pitch softballs to the extreme right...they just knock them out of the park...

    ...I know more times than not the hit is in foul territory, but that doesn't seem to stop them from parading around the bases claiming a home run...

    As you said earlier in this thread....something to the effect of cheap politics being easy and getting in the way of the real hard work


    16 minutes ago, swansont said:

    Women’s sports don’t exist? Odd that I haven’t noticed.

    Men have been banned from sports? Odd that I haven’t noticed.



    Let's pretend the context wasn't obvious?

  16. 4 minutes ago, iNow said:

    I know you don’t, but I did, which is why I pointed it out.

    Well, that’s rather extreme. I don’t think I struggle in the way you are suggesting. 

    At least I didn't bring up the Nazis....


    We're in good company though...Phi brought them up recently IIRC and that probably wasn't the first time in this thread.😀

    20 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

    Of course not, they haven't played 'yet'; how can you possibly explain a game that hasn't been played?


    Assuming I'm getting your context correctly:

    Why do you feel the experiments with inclusion should be done at elite levels?

  17. 20 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

    Of course it's a no, because 'they' will always be wrong, despite reason (you've said it before); you've yet to explain why you support this particular "ism" of thought... 🧐

    You've yet to explain why you think your version of fairness can possibly work for females above recreational level sports.

  18. 1 hour ago, dimreepr said:

    But more to the point, does that mean if you could write the rules, you'd let them play?

    If you mean letting XY athletes play at elite XX levels, then with the few possible XY intersex exceptions and few XY transitions before puberty, both of which would be looked at on an individual basis, sport dependant with onus to prove no XY advantage and with any drug treatments for health reasons only...then no.

    Edit: Though the onus of proof would be on the intersex athlete, in the grey area where possible they could still be accommodated as discussed much earlier in this thread...as I suggested Caster Semenya might share a podium spot if she was unable to prove no XY advantage, and no XY advantage could be reasonably proven.


  19. Well Dim, I don't think I've ever really taken my cue from anyone on this matter.

    I seem to be ahead of the IOC on rejecting the use of testosterone targets with their known health risks, yet readily accepting transgenders (and others) preference of identity without requiring any biological changes.


    That simply hasn't stopped me from recognizing that some XX athletes can become elite athletes if given the opportunity, even if their measurable performance would never match those of many XY athletes that never reach elite levels.

  20. 6 hours ago, CharonY said:

    How would you know if someone was transgender, if they are not transitioning?

    They simply declare that they have transgendered, or let me know they now identify as male or female.


    From the IOC policy statement in 2015 (note that the new guidelines have moved away from the testosterone requirements 2.2, 2.3. and 2.4, though they still allow sporting organizations to use them, including more restrictive versions of them)

    "2. Those who transition from male to female are eligible to compete in the female category under the following conditions:

    2.1. The athlete has declared that her gender identity is female. The declaration cannot be changed, for sporting purposes, for a minimum of four years.

    2.2. The athlete must demonstrate that her total testosterone level in serum has been below 10 nmol/L for at least 12 months prior to her first competition (with the requirement for any longer period to be based on a confidential case-by-case evaluation, considering whether or not 12 months is a sufficient length of time to minimize any advantage in women’s competition).

    2.3. The athlete's total testosterone level in serum must remain below 10 nmol/L throughout the period of desired eligibility to compete in the female category.

    2.4. Compliance with these conditions may be monitored by testing. In the event of non-compliance, the athlete’s eligibility for female competition will be suspended for 12 months."

    20 hours ago, J.C.MacSwell said:

    Other than my greater insistence on trying to accomodate intersex athletes without forcing drug treatments on them that they don't want and don't need, I'm pretty much on the same page as World Athletics.

    Are they in full panic mode as well? Is the IOC by allowing the same?

    Is everyone in full panic mode? What is being tried at elite levels that you approve of?

    Why would my sense that things are heading in the direction of my position as to elite sports eligibility cause me panic, while you and others here can so calmly watch it go against your wishes?

    This is meant to mean that I don't agree with the current World Athletics requirement for intersex athletes that wish to compete against women. 

    12 hours ago, J.C.MacSwell said:


    Though I am board with their stance on limiting inclusion of some trans athletes...World Athletics is banning intersex athletes in some events if they don't reduce their testosterone levels below 2.5Nmol/L.



    7 hours ago, iNow said:


    The way you kept typing it, you made it sound like they were abducting straight male boys out of middle and high school, sending them to nazi style camps, then forcing them to inject hormones all so they could go out with their hulking over muscled bodies and win some track and field events in the female categories. 

    I don't think I ever typed it in the way you are suggesting.

    1. Generally speaking, the intersex wishing to compete in the elite female categories are not straight male boys.

    2. Testosterone reducing treatments are quite the opposite of performance enhancing drugs

    You seem to struggle with moderate positions. You seem to start to understand (whether you agree with it or not), but then revert back to assuming some extreme.

  21. 27 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

    An anxiety of yours with minimal/negligible evidence to show for it to date.

    That's 0.0032% of Olympians since 2003. Storm in a thimble, or what?

    Way to miss the point yet again.

    What Olympics since 2003 allowed female transgenders to compete without testosterone reducing treatments?

    Are you advocating for testosterone targets to be continued? (don't answer, just snipe unless you want to make your position clear)

  22. 1 hour ago, zapatos said:

    No need to attack everyone just because one person called you a name. While my proposed solutions may be "hand wave" they are the best I'm capable of. I am in no position to lay out specific policy to the IOC. They have qualified people dedicated to this issue. I have 'me' part-time with feedback coming from other part-time participants.

    I don't think I attacked anyone, but in any case that comment wasn't intended to reflect on everyone. Although you've made it clear you don't agree with my position you have at least taken the effort to understand it.

    To some degree I would say the same with respect to INow, though he has yet to address some of the shortcomings in his proposals that would be of obvious concern to the IOC et al.

    2 hours ago, iNow said:

    Who is doing that, exactly?

    This reads like like a strawman, but I'm reluctant to jump to this conclusion and will instead ask for clarity around this "forcing hormone treatments to win at sports" idea you keep mentioning.

    Even if you can come up with an example or three, it's comments like these which I believe lead others to suggest a tone of panic over nothing. 

    Though I am board with their stance on limiting inclusion of some trans athletes...World Athletics is banning intersex athletes in some events if they don't reduce their testosterone levels below 2.5Nmol/L.

    This has already been discussed in this thread fairly recently but even if missed I don't understand the claims I might panic over anything.

    2 hours ago, StringJunky said:

    All we've been suggesting is possible paths to resolution, not the details, which can only be found with empirical methods and experience. Is that so hard to understand? If you call that 'handwaving' then further discussion is pointless. 


    No hard details are required to understand that replacing elite level female athletics with a second tier of mixed XX and XY athletes, is either prone to be dominated by non elite XY athletes outnumbering elite XX athletes...or simply creating an even lower recreational level for all participants. (which is absolutely fine on it's own but not as a replacement for elite female athletics)

    If the inclusion being sought is for recreational athletics I haven't seen anyone objecting lately...the likes of Mike Tyson pummeling females aside.

  23. 2 hours ago, dimreepr said:

    I've had a think about what it tells me, either your X, something I can't say, cus you'd report me, or Y, you've got a spreadbet on how many page's this will get to, or XY, you're a troll.

    If I've been a troll for the purpose of trying to get those with hand wave solutions to address the concerns of the IOC, World Athletics, the United Nations Human Rights Council, and the World Medical Association...I certainly haven't been a very successful one...

  24. 5 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

    Another diversion instead of an answer, it tells me a great deal...

    After all my long winded and repetitive attempts at explanation that you failed to understand, I'm glad you could glean so much from so little.

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