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Riley Gaines, the 12-time all-American, former swimmer from the University of Kentucky, took to the stage Friday at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) convention in Washington, D.C.
Outside the swimming world, Gaines is most known for having to compete against biological male Lia Thomas in NCAA events—and having the bravery to take on the woke mafia and speak out about the unfairness of it all. She’s shared her views before, but to hear this story is frankly shocking and reveals just how far officials were willing to go to promote a far-left agenda at her expense.
Former Kentucky swimmer @Riley_Gaines_ on the injustice of being forced to compete against a biological male:
“Everything I devoted my entire life to, I was reduced to a photo op. To validate the identity of a male.” pic.twitter.com/dU72Ava23P
— CPAC (@CPAC) March 3, 2023
She describes one event in particular that is truly galling:
So that first day of the meet, I got to personally feel the effects that this infringement had on myself and my teammates. We sat on the side of the pool and watched Lia Thomas swim to a national title in the 500 freestyle, beating out three Olympians, American record holders—the most impressive female swimmers of all time—by body lengths.
Thomas was later nominated by the University of Pennsylvania, the swimmer’s school, for the 2022 NCAA Woman of the Year Award. Gaines continued:
…I want to add that this was a male swimmer who the year before was ranked at best 462nd in the men’s division. And so that next day, Lia Thomas and I competed against each other in the two hundred-yard freestyle, which ultimately ended in a tie. [Applause.] Which now, now looking back, I realize kind of how God has moved through all of this, but we tied, we went the exact same time down to the 100th of a second.
The rest of her story gets truly dystopian, and I will just let her words speak for themselves because they’re powerful:
And so upon tying, we go behind the awards podium where the NCAA officials hand you your trophy and you’re marched out and you’re named an all-American. But we go back there and the official looks at me and Lia, we’re about this far apart [indicates with her hands that they were close to each other] and he says great job. You guys tied—Lia gets the trophy.
And so I look at him and. I say OK, I understand we tied, and I understand there’s one trophy, but what’s your, what’s your thought process as to why Lia gets the trophy? And he said, well, for photo purposes, Lia has to have the trophy so you can pose with this one. But you go home empty-handed. Lia takes the trophy. [Boos.]
And so that’s truly, of course, I knew what was happening was wrong in regards to our unfair, or the disadvantages that we were at, and I knew what was happening in regards to the locker room being forced to undress in front of a fully intact biological male.
I knew that was wrong. But when the NCAA reduced everything that I had dedicated my entire life to, I’ve been swimming since I was four years old. Everything that I have dedicated my entire life to. I was reduced to a photo op to validate the identity of a male and that’s when I decided to take a public stance and really just standing in the truth.
After Lia Thomas and I tied last year at our NCAA championships where they gave the trophy to Thomas specifically for “photo purposes”, the NCAA created a new guideline that states what to do for a tie. @NCAA lacks leadership and accountability. pic.twitter.com/tLChD6JuXf
— Riley Gaines (@Riley_Gaines_) February 25, 2023
It’s a truly disturbing tale and shows how the NCAA and the Universities of Kentucky and Pennsylvania were willing to throw away the dreams and accomplishments of young women in order to push a frankly insane agenda. Thomas is reportedly 6’1 and has obviously male muscle structure. It’s not anti-trans or transphobic to point out that it’s completely unfair to allow the swimmer to compete against biological females.
Gaines spoke to the Washington Examiner Friday at CPAC:
“There’s this systemic eradication of women that is being attempted by the Left, and it’s more than sports,” Gaines said. “They’re changing definitions. They’re changing terms that are specific to women. … These large organizations and large companies, these woke companies, continually make the claims that men make the best women.”
She’s absolutely correct, there is a systemic eradication of women attempt underway, and too many people are remaining silent. It’s incredibly brave for her to say, “enough is enough.”
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