By Corinne Murdock |
On Wednesday, Riley Gaines urged Congress to pass Rep. Debbie Lesko’s (R-AZ-08) bill defining a woman.
Gaines is the former University of Kentucky swimmer forced to compete against a biological male who identifies as a transgender woman: Lia, formerly Will, Thomas. Gaines and other swimmers were also made to share private spaces with Thomas, such as locker rooms.
Gaines, who joined Lesko in a press conference on Wednesday, asserted defining the term “woman” was necessary to ensure equal protections under the law.
“Elected bureaucrats and judges and officials and administrators have altered the legal meaning of these sex-based terms to interpret it as they want, and to reflect identity rather than biology, and to require that men and women be treated not just equal but the same,” said Gaines. “The public knows what a woman is, and it’s time that our laws did, too.”
Lesko’s bill defines sex as the biological sex, either male or female, at birth. It also defines women and girls in reference to human females, and man and boy in reference to human males. Likewise, mother is defined as a “parent of the female sex,” and father is defined as a “parent of the male sex.”
“[T]here are important reasons to distinguish between the sexes with respect to athletics, prisons, domestic violence shelters, restrooms, and other areas, particularly where biology, safety, and privacy are implicated,” states the resolution.
Gaines lamented that modern political discourse has come to reckon anyone as “brave” for speaking the truth of biological reality out loud.
“In my mind, I can’t fathom how it is brave to say that men and women are different. I can’t fathom that requires courage. When I think of courage, I think of people on the front lines,” said Gaines.
Lesko noted that in one of her local school districts, two of the board members have fought to prevent boys from gaining access to girls’ bathrooms. However, the board members of the unnamed district were in the minority. Lesko noted that there have been violent assaults and rapes of girls and women in bathrooms by males pretending to be female.
“The left has declared a war on women,” said Lesko. “It is now more important than ever to affirm the biological differences between men and women to protect women’s hard-fought rights and ensure women have spaces reserved for them in society.”
Gaines also stressed that women’s feelings, privacy, safety, and self-esteem were sacrificed to spare the feelings of men suffering from gender dysphoria.
“What mattered to the left was protecting the feelings of a male at the expense of our own,” stated Gaines. “It’s 2023, we have the right to vote as women, we can own property. But we have to plead and beg for privacy in our locker rooms so we’re not violated. And when you do plead and beg, you’re called a ‘bigot,’ you’re called ‘transphobic’ for wanting safety.”
Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ-05) has also cosponsored the bill.
The 25 other cosponsors of the bill, titled the Women’s Bill of Rights, are Reps. Diana Harshbarger (R-TN-01), Mary Miller (R-IL-15), Kevin Hern (R-OK-01), Claudia Tenney (R-NY-24), Robert Aderholt (R-AL-04), Andrew Clyde (R-GA-09), Randy Weber (R-TX-14), Michael Guest (R-MS-03), George Santos (R-NY-03), Andrew Ogles (R-TN-05), Virginia Foxx (R-NC-05), Ralph Norman (R-SC-05), Burgess Owens (R-UT-04), Ronny Jackson (R-TX-13), Harriet Hageman (R-WY), Jeff Duncan (R-SC-03), Jake Ellzey (R-TX-06), Jim Banks (R-IN-03), Buddy Carter (R-GA-01), Greg Steube (R-FL-17), Ben Cline (R-VA-06), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA-01), Anna Paulina Luna (R-FL-13), Michael Burgess (R-TX-26), and Brian Babin (R-TX-36). The bill hasn’t gone further than its introduction in February.