Another medical expert is suggesting that current testosterone suppression requirements for athletes is most likely “insufficient” for evening the playing field between transgender women and biologically female athletes.
As part of an exclusive Good Morning America segment on trans swimmer Lia Thomas, ABC reporter JuJu Chang also interviewed Dr. Michael Joyner, a medical expert with the Mayo Clinic.
Chang questioned Joyner whether “years of hormone therapy cannot put trans women in a place to compete with cisgender women.”
“I think that the evidence so far would suggest that period of a year, two years, three years, four years, is probably insufficient,” he said.
🚨🚨@JujuChangABC: "Are you saying that years of hormone therapy cannot put trans women in a place to compete with cisgender women?
Dr. Michael Joyner: "I think that the evidence so far would suggest that period of a year, 2 years, 3 years, 4 years, is probably insufficient." pic.twitter.com/R0kHHXyeN4
— Mary Margaret Olohan (@MaryMargOlohan) May 31, 2022
Joyner also shared his thoughts on testosterone advantages in an interview with The New York Times.
“You see the divergence immediately as the testosterone surges into the boys,” he said. “There are dramatic differences in performances.”
“There are social aspects to sport, but physiology and biology underpin it,” Joyner added. “Testosterone is the 800-pound gorilla.”
The NCAA Board of Governors updated its transgender participation policy in January, requiring transgender athletes to document “sport-specific” testosterone levels within their sport’s approved range at the beginning of the season and ahead of championship selections.
“We are steadfast in our support of transgender student-athletes and the fostering of fairness across college sports,” John DeGioia, chair of the NCAA board and president of Georgetown University, said in a statement at the time.
“It is important that NCAA member schools, conferences and college athletes compete in an inclusive, fair, safe and respectful environment and can move forward with a clear understanding of the new policy,” he added.
But many parents and athletes do not believe this is enough — and the Times cited peer-reviewed studies that demonstrate that the fastest biologically male transgender athletes still have a “substantial edge” over the fastest biologically female athletes even after testosterone suppression.
Thomas is a great example of this: the transgender athlete shot up in national rankings after entering women’s sports, ranking 32nd in the men’s 1,650-yard freestyle and then eight in the women’s 1,650-yard freestyle, the Times reported.
In the men’s 200-yard freestyle, Thomas had ranked 554th. This year, Thomas tied for fifth place with swimmer Riley Gaines in that same race at the women’s 2022 NCAA championships (Gaines said that an NCAA official gave Thomas the fifth place trophy over Gaines, since they only had one).
Gaines first spoke out about her frustration with the event in an interview with The Daily Wire, insisting, “We need to create fair boundaries that protect the integrity of women in sports.”
The Times noted that Thomas ranked 65th in the men’s 500-yard freestyle, but won the 500-yard freestyle at the NCAA’s swimming as a female.
Dr. Ross Tucker, a physiologist who spoke with the Times, said that “Lia Thomas is the manifestation of the scientific evidence.”
“The reduction in testosterone did not remove her biological advantage,” he said.
The Times story comes ahead of the release of The Daily Wire’s What Is A Woman documentary, in which Matt Walsh examines the current controversy surrounding gender and biology.