From beauty pageants to college sports, transgender people break barriers
Jenna Talackova, right, and her lawyer Gloria Allred want the Miss Universe pageant to drop its "naturally born" clause.
April 14th, 2012
10:06 AM ET

From beauty pageants to college sports, transgender people break barriers

Jenna Talackova was born a man. She began the process of becoming a woman at age 14 with hormone treatments and then had surgery at the age of 19.

“I have always dreamed of being in the Miss Universe competition and having an opportunity to represent my country, Canada,” said the 23-year-old beauty contestant.  “I was told by representatives of the Miss Universe Canada Pageant that I could not compete because a rule stated that I had to be a naturally born woman,” she said.

The Miss Universe Pageant is owned by Donald Trump who, after much attention, changed his mind and said Talackova could compete. But, Talackova’s attorney Gloria Allred says, she and her client want the “naturally born” rule eliminated.

There are some pageants specifically for transgender women and transvestites, but Talackova wants to compete in mainstream pageants. Allred said allowing Talackova to compete but not changing the “naturally born” rule doesn't address the problem.

That rule has already been dropped from most sports from high school to the Olympics. Transgender people can compete in high school, college, the Olympics and the LPGA. The NCAA amended its transgender policy just last year.

“We met with several of our committees that deal with some of these issues and the main policy issues had to do with mixed team status and had to do with the use of banned substances - testosterone,” said Mary Wilfer, associate director of health and safety at the NCAA.

She said that after a year of testosterone suppression medication, a male becoming a female will lose a sufficient amount of male muscle-building strengths and other benefits of testosterone and therefore has no unfair advantage over other naturally born females when it comes to athletic competitions.

Nancy Hogshead-Makar is the senior director of advocacy for the Women’s Sports Foundation. The WSF was part of a group that helped form the transgender policies for the high school and college level.

“In high school it’s about gender identification. Whatever somebody says they are is what they get to participate in,” said Hogshead-Makar. The WSF took its policy for the NCAA from the International Olympic Committee’s policy that mandates that transgender women must be at least two years post-gender reassignment surgery in order to compete.

Another group that helped shape the NCAA’s policy is the National Center for Lesbian Rights. Shannon Minter, a transgender man, said it’s true that just because a woman was once a man, it does not make her a better or stronger athlete.

“There’s lots of women actually, transgender women now, who are competing in women’s sports. And you know, I will say that none of them are at the top of their field,” Minter said.

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  1. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    Who is Lady Gaga?

    April 14, 2012 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mittens; job destroyer

    As a panacea for the masses and as appeasement some portion of the upper middle class will be provided health care.

    April 14, 2012 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      I have the answer ...... health care mega ball lottery...lol. gotta be in it to win it.

      April 14, 2012 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    Hi fernace, and goodnight. I'm already in bed–have to catch plane early tomorrow.

    April 14, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  4. fernace

    Mmmmm, you didn't answer my question! How can an all encompassing, loving God allow people to be born gay/gender compromised!? This is Not a new phenomenon, it's been going on for millennia! IMHO, God has a plan that we are not privy to & I'm going to accept All Gods creation as they are & refuse to condemn any1! As far as "man-made" goes, the Bible was written & edited by humans & there are now more Christian religions (Catholic, Episcopalian, Baptist, Methodist, Pentecostal etc.) than we can possibly adhere to! Who is right? Who preaches the "true way"? We may not have certain scientific proof of how gay/transgender people are created inutero, but I'm sure we will! In the mean time, they are humans & should be respected as such!!

    April 14, 2012 at 8:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      If we can use science to create life in unnatural ways. Why not use the same science to eliminate genetic anomalies, including gay and transgender types of genetic abnormalities.

      April 14, 2012 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      why don't you replace gay/gender with another sin so you can understand or see...say like ah murder... murderers and those with tendency to murder also dwell in God's creation...they also been around for a milleneum long time...since cain...so are you going to be acceptin' of that??? and not condemned that??? because according to you...there is no truth, there is no faith, and there is no god! what you are describing is a state of godlessness and lawlessness and because these do not exist and therefore there can't be any condemnation...because these notions: right wrong good evil truth are fabricated...made up...therefore the murderer should be respected, tolerated because their born that way, and it's all really about being human...who im i to judge god's plan for the murderer???

      April 14, 2012 at 9:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      That was a peculiar analogy, but if society could eliminate murderers with scientific genetic certainty ....... I am sure that there would not be too much objection to that either... 🙂

      April 14, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      If given the choice, some parents may welcome the opportunity to choose whether or not their child will be a murderer, or gay or trans. So they could really benefit from scientific research and advances in this situation. Not to mention the benefits to society too.

      April 14, 2012 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      Just saying, let's be liberal about this. Right to life, right to choose, right to be or not to be. That is the question...... lol and 😉

      April 14, 2012 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      @John science is a benefit as long as it does not oppose god, life, truth, and love...you speak as one who opposes.
      you are flawed in your premises that is why your conclusions are inhumane, crude, uncivilized, dark, disordered, ignorant, decadent, uneducated, and invoke plagues, death, destruction, pollutes, disregards, dignigrates, etc, etc, etc...plunging mankind back to the dark diabolical ages predating the time of the flood and Noah...your way of thinking debases men and their dignity...your science of rebellion made god sorrowful he ever created man in his image...you are an abuser of will and intellect...your way is that of an old man...done away with and put down long ago...

      April 14, 2012 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      If you could eliminate gayness, before birth, who could argue against that? Its like getting rid of cancer. What's wrong with that. Whether its psychological or genetic. It could be eradicated from society using modern science. What else is science for?

      April 14, 2012 at 9:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      @Tom you sound like the monsters of humanity like hitler or sanger with their elimination of the undesirables. and worst yet their definition of desirable...man is not defined by insane rhetoric of wicked men who reject and hate god and his image. humanity is blessed and is here to be fruitful and multiply...not to be eliminated...evil men are called to repent...the righteous men are called to evangelized with word, deed, and thought...

      April 14, 2012 at 10:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      @mmmmm its not a religious debate. In terms of God there is no debate. However, our society and laws do allow free choice. Genetic testing is already widely used and accepted in women who are pregnant and identified as at risk. So the debate is just about expanding those rights of women who want to have the right to have a choice. Libs can't have it both ways.

      April 14, 2012 at 11:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      So, when given the right to choose freely, a free market will result, and society will determine its future. Supply and demand....who would want to buy a defective product? No religion involved, just human nature and free will.

      April 14, 2012 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      @Tom you're on the losing side...!

      April 14, 2012 at 11:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      ...and your days are numbered!

      April 14, 2012 at 11:41 pm | Report abuse |
  5. fernace

    Hey JIF, sweet dreams & have a good flight! C ya soon!!

    April 14, 2012 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

      Thanks. You too.

      April 14, 2012 at 9:27 pm | Report abuse |
  6. mittens; job destroyer

    I will ask my wife to report back to me what inutero means.

    April 14, 2012 at 8:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      ...with her litter of babies...that's one question she should be able to answer!

      April 14, 2012 at 10:24 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "The Lunatic Fringe" 5613118r162

    Good night Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©. Cmon guys I was pulling your chains. I really do wear cheap cologne. It's pretty much what my wife likes. I did used to wear Engish Leather in my 20's. My wife liked it, I didn't. For a while the big whoop was But Brut yeah Brut. I grew away from that. I still wear inexpensive cologne. Now we're getting very personal. I like my deodorant to be Mitchum Advanced and my cologne to be Jean Phillip. I don't like to smell strong as a skunk. It's more like what works most compatible with my skin chemistry.

    April 14, 2012 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      Skunks are gnarly. They are the coolest pets ever.

      April 14, 2012 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jiao

    Sin is in the eye of the beholder. As is hate.

    April 14, 2012 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      what does the eye who never tires of seeing knows? those who obeys the eyes are undiscipline...

      April 14, 2012 at 9:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      ...and easily seduced...

      April 14, 2012 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Jeff Frank (R-Ohio) "The Lunatic Fringe" 5613118r162

    You want a monster? Hitler was a monster. But. If you would want a monster's specialist, then you might be referring to one of the most feared monsters of the Nazi plan. That would be Dr. Josef Mengele. One of the most feared nazis on the planet.
    Here's a sample of his jacket:
    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josef_Mengele

    April 14, 2012 at 10:53 pm | Report abuse |
  10. hamsta

    IT PUTS THE LOTION ON ITS SKIN OR IT GETS THE HOSE AGAIN....these morphodites are dangerous to society.

    April 14, 2012 at 11:06 pm | Report abuse |
  11. BOMBO ©

    I don't really have a problem with an adult changing his/her/its original gender, but what kind of parents let their son begin hormone therapy at 14? Some people are still just working things out at that age.

    April 15, 2012 at 12:27 am | Report abuse |
  12. kellyintulsa

    Hello everyone. I'm not sure how many of you will see this post but I'm hoping those of you who made the wonderful comments about leeintulsa are reading this. Your comments, thoughts and prayers for the family and myself are greatly appreciated. It was nice to find out that he had touched so many people around the world and that others got to know the man that I loved. He was 1 in a million smart, funny, loving fiancee and father. He loved blogging with all of you and I to hope in time to become part of this world and get to know more about the man that held my heart. Thank you from the bottoms of our hearts !!

    April 15, 2012 at 1:05 am | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      Dear kellyintulsa:
      Welcome to our little family.
      You will soon learn who the dcent people are here; if Lee has talked about us at all, you will already know.
      He was a class act.
      So are you.
      If there is anything I can ever do for you, please let me kniow.
      You have my number.

      You also know that you have my sincerest sympathy with the loss of your bwloved.

      :

      April 15, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  13. fernace

    Thank you kellyintulsa! It was a sad blow to our little blog community to hear of your fiances passing! Howerver, it can't compare w/the loss you, his family & friends have experienced! leeintulsa was & forever will be remembered as a class act! Now you are proving he picked a woman w/the same values! The fact that you're on here thanking his blog friends speaks volumes about both of you! I am so sorry for your loss! There are hardly words.....except we are happy & honored to blog w/you! You are welome here w/open arms!!

    April 15, 2012 at 3:25 am | Report abuse |
  14. fernace

    Mmmmm, I know where you're coming from more than you realize! I used to be an evangelical Christian & a "True Believer"! Through life experience & many incredible, loving, giving humans & humbling experiences, God has opened my eyes & graduated me to a Knower! He (use traditional term for simplicity)has shown me the lowest of lowly humans & when I said "Please, Lord get me outta here" He said to me:" But these are my children, too! I sent my Son for them as I did for you"! That was a powerful moment & there was no Church or Bible nearby! This convo is not about people who willingly commit attrocious acts, but about people who are born a certain way! Right now we don't know why that happens & traditionally we credit God for such occurenses, so if God did it, Mmmmm......well you get the picture!!

    April 15, 2012 at 4:02 am | Report abuse |
    • ♚Mmmmm♛

      @fernie do you make this up as you go along...do you know what is concupisence? and when it originates? god is good and holy...he does not condone evil or nor does god tempt men with evil...

      April 15, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  15. _ EARTH MOTHER _

    ... Along with "becoming a woman" I'd like to see how well they'd handle the pain of periods, pregnancy and childbirth ...

    April 15, 2012 at 4:09 am | Report abuse |
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