Indiana lawmakers to weigh bill banning transgender athletes

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Indiana lawmakers will consider a Republican-backed bill that would ban transgender women and girls from participating in school sports that match their gender identity.

The proposal would prohibit students who were born male but identify as female from participating in a sport or on an athletic team that is designated for women or girls. The bill is slated to be heard by the House education committee on Monday, committee chair Rep. Bob Behning of Indianapolis said on Wednesday.

Behning said the bill “deserves discussion,” adding that a “majority” of House Republicans support the bill.

“It’s just, how do we make sure that we’re … playing fairly in terms of athletics,” Behning said.

The bill, authored by Republican Rep. Michelle Davis of Greenwood, would additionally establish a civil action for violations, and schools wouldn’t be subject to liabilities for complying with it.

The ACLU of Indiana said in a statement Thursday that the bill “sends trans youth the message that they’re not worthy of the same opportunities as their classmates.”

The group also emphasized that trans students ”have the right to participate in sports consistent with who they are, just like anyone else.” Denying students that right, the ACLU continued, ’is unconstitutional and blatant discrimination.”

If the bill passes the Legislature, Indiana could be the 10th Republican-dominated state to adopt such a ban on transgender women or girls. In two of those states—Idaho and West Virginia—the laws have been halted by federal judges. The U.S. Department of Justice has challenged bans in other states, slamming them as violations of federal law.

At least half a dozen other bills proposed by conservative lawmakers in both chambers of the General Assembly in the current legislative session further seek to put limits on transgender Hoosiers.

One House bill would prohibit transgender people from using bathrooms that correlate with their gender identity. Another seeks to ban gender changes on birth certificates.

In the Senate, a bill file by Republican Sen. Erin Houchin of Salem would amend Indiana law to clarify that using pronouns that are not consistent with a child’s gender identity is not considered child abuse or neglect.

A separate proposal authored by Republican Sen. Dennis Kruse of Auburn would ban gender-changing medical care for minors, including surgeries or prescribed hormones, regardless of parental approval. However, Kruse told The Indianapolis Star his bill would not be advancing.

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8 thoughts on “Indiana lawmakers to weigh bill banning transgender athletes

  1. I propose a constitution amendment that would limit each house of our legislature to just 15 bills per session. These people can’t help themselves in inventing a new crisis that justifies their campaign fund raising efforts.

    1. That is a great idea! Maybe they would work on things that show a serious mindset of intelligent people working on advancing Indiana from the bottom of every quality of life list. And keeping Indiana legislature off late night TV.

  2. To those dismissing this as a fake or unimportant, you must not be paying much attention to what is currently going on in the U.S. aside from what trickles down in MSM or social media. This is a very real issue and a bill that needs to be passed. I’m not going to say that every trans is bad but there is a serious Marxist-like movement associated with the grooming of children into this ideology. Children are being indoctrinated into this through radical teachers and books that are being snuck into the libraries along with services such as TikTok/FaceBook/Twitter. Just do some searches on DuckDuckGo, take a peek at LibsOfTikTok, anything. It is not an isolated phenomenon.