Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves signaled late this week that he would sign a bill protecting girls from having to compete against biological males for athletic opportunities.
The Mississippi House of Representatives passed the Mississippi Fairness Act in an 81-28 vote on Wednesday, which comes after the Mississippi Senate passed the bill last month in a 34-9 vote.
“I will sign our bill to protect young girls from being forced to compete with biological males for athletic opportunities,” Reeves wrote on Twitter. “It’s crazy we have to address it, but the Biden E.O. forced the issue. Adults? That’s on them. But the push for kids to adopt transgenderism is just wrong.”
I will sign our bill to protect young girls from being forced to compete with biological males for athletic opportunities.
It’s crazy we have to address it, but the Biden E.O. forced the issue. Adults? That’s on them. But the push for kids to adopt transgenderism is just wrong. https://t.co/sncpaPlTbZ
— Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) March 4, 2021
Republican state Sen. Angela Hill told ABC News after the bill passed that legislators took action because “if we do not move to protect female sports from biological males who have an unfair physiological advantage, we will eventually no longer have female sports.”
“This issue is imminent in Mississippi,” she said. “We have to make a statement that women matter, female sports matter.”
The Fairness Act reads in part (formatting adjusted):
Interscholastic or intramural athletic teams or sports that are sponsored by a public primary or secondary school or any school that is a member of the Mississippi High School Activities Association or public institution of higher education or any higher education institution that is a member of the NCAA, NAIA or NJCCA shall be expressly designated as one of the following based on biological sex: (a) “Males,” “men” or “boys”; (b) “Females,” “women” or “girls”; or (c) “Coed” or “mixed.” Athletic teams or sports designated for “females,” “women” or “girls” shall not be open to students of the male sex.
If disputed, a student may establish his or her sex by presenting a signed physician’s statement which shall indicate the student’s sex based solely upon: (a) The student’s internal and external reproductive anatomy; (b) The student’s normal endogenously produced levels of testosterone; and (c) An analysis of the student’s genetic makeup.
One of the most controversial Executive Orders that Democrat President Joe Biden signed in his first days in office, which Reeves mentioned in his tweet, mandated allowing biological males to compete in women’s sports.
The order states in part:
Every person should be treated with respect and dignity and should be able to live without fear, no matter who they are or whom they love. Children should be able to learn without worrying about whether they will be denied access to the restroom, the locker room, or school sports. Adults should be able to earn a living and pursue a vocation knowing that they will not be fired, demoted, or mistreated because of whom they go home to or because how they dress does not conform to sex-based stereotypes. People should be able to access healthcare and secure a roof over their heads without being subjected to sex discrimination. All persons should receive equal treatment under the law, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation.
The order “unilaterally eviscerate[d] women’s sports,” author and women’s rights activist Abigail Shrier wrote on Twitter. “Any educational institution that receives federal funding must admit biologically-male athletes to women’s teams, women’s scholarships, etc. A new glass ceiling was just placed over girls.”