“Lia” Thomas, the “transgender” University of Pennsylvania swimmer who has become famous, and infamous, for making women in the pool seem like manatees racing a barracuda, recently said that he just tries to tune out the negativity directed his way. After all, not only do many people say it’s unfair he’s competing with females, but his recent boast that winning was “so easy, I was cruising” truly raised hackles. But even though he’s not really a damsel in distress, I’m here to help as his knight in shining armor.
No, as my above paragraph indicates, Mr. Thomas, I won’t play the pronoun game. I won’t stop mentioning that your birth name is “Will.” I also can’t in good conscience call you “transgender” as opposed to the more accurate acronym I originated, MUSS (Made-up Sexual Status). No, those things I can’t, or won’t, do. But there’s something I will, Will.
I understand how, contrary to your bad press, you weren’t being braggadocious and rubbing salt in the wound when boasting of beating the girls; rather, you were rightfully proud. But you do need to learn how to articulate why. So I’m here to help put what must be your feelings into words.
When, Mr. Thomas, you’re asked about your celebratory remarks, simply say (I realize you may alter my terminology a tad):
I always knew I’d have my work cut out for me if I were going to compete with the gals. When I was little, I learned from the feminists, those sage purveyors of bubble-bursting reality, that as ex-vice president Joe Biden put it a while back, “There’s not a single thing a man can do that a woman can’t do as well or better — not a single thing.” I watched movie after movie and show after show in which, art imitating life, 125-pound ladies would toss around 250-pound men like rag dolls. These facts of life in question were, of course, reinforced in school with various “girl power” messages, though for the life of me I could never figure out why they had to rub in females’ superiority. Wasn’t it enough just being better?
So I didn’t know if I could ever compete as a “woman” given my inherent male disadvantages. I realized that, if I could even qualify for a women’s swim team, I risked complete and utter humiliation. That’s why I’m so proud that — through hard work, determination and blood, sweat and tears — I’ve overcome those disadvantages to triumph over my more naturally gifted competitors. I mean, it’s just like David slaying Goliath.
Of course, I understand the girls’ feelings, the bruised egos resulting from losing, consistently and publicly, to the weaker sex. But with all due respect, I think they just need to suck it up and work harder. If I can climb my mountain, they can, with their inherent advantages, leapfrog the speed bump that is an innately inferior male in the pool.
And, Mr. Thomas, when it’s pointed out that your swimming times in years past on UPenn’s men’s team were “women’s records,” set ‘em straight. To wit:
I hear irrelevant points like that repeatedly. We all know that time is relative and that it is, as Albert Einstein put it even with his inferior male brain, “a handy illusion.” So I don’t think it’s right to apply our white-supremacist and white-male-linear-logic fancies here. I prefer feminist thinking: Just because the guys’ times are lower doesn’t mean they’re better.
Anyway, that’s my “truth.” Don’t impose your values on me.
Remember, Mr. Thomas, you proved that where there’s a Will there’s a way — and you shouldn’t be denied your voice just because you’re a man in a woman’s world. You go, boy!
©Selwyn Duke. All rights reserved.