North Dakota Lawmakers Propose Bill Requiring Student Athletes to Compete as Birth Sex

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BISMARCK, N.D. — 10 Republican lawmakers in North Dakota have proposed a bill requiring student athletes to compete as their birth sex in order to protect fairness in sports.

“The state, a political subdivision of the state, or an entity that receives public funding from the state or from a political subdivision of the state may not allow an individual who was assigned the opposite sex at birth to participate on an athletic team sponsored or funded by the state, political subdivision, or entity and which is exclusively for females or exclusively for males,” House Bill 1298 reads in part.

It also prohibits publicly-funded athletic facilities, stadiums and fields from being used to host events where those of the opposite sex compete on exclusively male or female teams.

Read the legislation in full here.

Main sponsor Rep. Ben Koppelman, R-West Fargo, told the Grand Forks Herald that he doesn’t see the bill as being against “transgenders” per se but rather maintaining fairness in athletic competitions.

“I kind of dismiss the idea that it should be about trans, because it’s not about trans. It’s about fair competition,” he told the outlet. “What it’s based on is science that says, ‘Here are the physiological differences between people when they are born.’ And these are irreversible things.”

“I would never want my daughter to play in sports and have a guy beat her out in track or out in javelin, where she has no chance,” also remarked co-sponsor Sen. Janne Myrdal, R-Edinburg. “I can’t fathom that transgender people won’t understand that.”

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The Herald explains that a 2015 policy under the North Dakota High School Activities Association allows students who identify as the opposite sex to compete in accordance with their “gender identity” in certain cases, such as if a male has undergone testosterone suppression for one year. Koppelman’s bill would negate that provision.

House Minority Leader Josh Boschee, D-Fargo, opposes the legislation, telling local television station KFYR that he feels there are more important issues to focus on.

“It’s disappointing that this type of legislation is being introduced here in North Dakota. We’re in the middle of a public health crisis, and this is what some Republican legislators seem to think is a priority right now when it hasn’t been an issue in North Dakota,” he stated.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ALCU) also considers the bill an “attack” on those who struggle with their gender, remarking that it only leaves two choices: compete with a sex that they don’t identify with or don’t compete at all.

Co-sponsor Myrdal acknowledged that transgenders may indeed “lose some opportunities” in seeking to live as the opposite sex, but added, “[Y]ou’re not going to take all women’s and girls’ opportunities away just because you wish to do that.”

As previously reported, while some view transgenderism as a medical condition, Christians believe the matter is also a spiritual issue at its root — one that stems from the same predicament all men everywhere face due to the Fall.

The Bible teaches that all are born with the Adamic sin nature, having various inherent feelings and inclinations that are contrary to the law of God and being utterly incapable of changing by themselves.

Jesus outlined in John 3:5-7 that men must be regenerated by the second birth, and be transformed from being in Adam to being a new creation in Christ, or they cannot see the kingdom of Heaven. It is known in Christianity as the doctrine of regeneration.

Romans 7:18 explains, “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.”

But 1 Corinthians 15:45 cheers, “The first man, Adam, became a living soul. The last Adam (Jesus) became a life-giving spirit.”

Galatians 5:16-17 therefore teaches, “This I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary the one to the other, so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.”


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