Mississippi Gov Signs Bill into Law Banning Transgenders from Female Sports
Governor Tate Reeves makes legislation official and bans trans athletes from girls' events
Mississippi's Republican governor, Tate Reeves, has signed a bill into state law that bans biological male transgender athletes from competing in female sports events.
Gov. Reeves signed the bill on Thursday, making Mississippi the first to issue a statewide ban on public schools allowing transgenders to compete in girls' sports.
The new law will affect all state schools and universities in Mississippi.
Republicans in The Magnolia State have said the law is a necessary response to Joe Biden’s day-one executive order.
Biden's order calls on schools across the country to allow students to participate in sports under their chosen gender identity.
"This important piece of legislation will ensure that young girls in Mississippi have a fair, level playing field in public school sports," the governor said Thursday.
"It sends a clear message to my daughters and all of Mississippi’s daughters that their rights are worth fighting for," he added.
I never imagined dealing with this, but POTUS left us no choice. One of his first acts was to sign an EO encouraging transgenderism in children. So today, I proudly signed the Mississippi Fairness Act to ensure young girls are not forced to compete against biological males. pic.twitter.com/INZgKQRMJr— Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) March 11, 2021
The legislation, known as the Mississippi Fairness Act, is just one of 25 other bills popping up around the country as some conservatives fear allowing biological male athletes to participate in female sports could strip biological females of opportunities to fairly compete, according to Fox News.
Reeves, a father of three daughters who play sports, took to Twitter earlier this month after lawmakers passed the bill, saying the measure would "protect young girls from being forced to compete with biological males for athletic opportunities."
I will sign our bill to protect young girls from being forced to compete with biological males for athletic opportunities.— Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) March 4, 2021
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
The Republican governor was asked Thursday if he could point to a specific occurrence in Mississippi where a female athlete had been surpassed by a transgender athlete.
Reeves did not highlight any examples but pointed to Biden’s order as the reason youth sports have taken the front seat politically across the nation.
"Now, I never would have envisioned on Inauguration Day 2020 that we would be here this morning," Reeves said.
"In fact, I never envisioned on Inauguration Day 2021 that we would be here this morning.
"But for the fact that President Biden, as one of his first initiatives, sat down and signed an executive order which in my view encourages transgenderism amongst our young people."
Champions for LGBTQ rights condemned the bill Thursday saying it "isn’t about protecting fairness in women’s sports."
"It’s about erasing and excluding trans people from participation in all aspects of public life," Mississippi’s ACLU branch said in a statement Thursday.
"Not once have the supporters of this bill cited an actual dispute over this issue in Mississippi."
"Whatever your politics, we should all agree that ostracizing middle and high school kids is not something to celebrate," the statement added.