A transgender woman won the first international women’s weightlifting title after breaking four national records.
Laurel Hubbard bested the second-place finisher, Iuniarra Sipaia, by 19 kgs (or 42 pounds), the NZ Herald reported.
— FloElite (@FloElite) March 20, 2017
Hubbard’s victory is being hailed as a pioneering moment for the LGBT community. Laurel Hubbard, 39, previously competed in men’s powerlifting as Gavin Hubbardbefore transitioning in her mid-3os.
Hubbard’s inclusion in the women’s division has angered some athletes, but Garry Marshall, president of the Olympic Weightlifting New Zealand, said she’s allowed to compete against women as a transgender.
“We have to follow the policy of the International Olympic Committee and the International Weightlifting Federation,” Marshall said. “They do not acknowledge in any way the gender identity of an athlete other than male or female; they’re not described as transgender.”
— the cockroach (@cckrch) March 20, 2017
The inclusion of transgenders in women’s athletic competitions has fueled national debate over its fairness.
In February, a 17-year-old female wrestler who is transitioning into a male beat out a field of teenage girls win the state wrestling championship.
Meanwhile, Twitter reacted to Laurel Hubbard’s weightlifting championship with its usual snarky humor.
Laurel Hubbard? I'm not surprised. pic.twitter.com/SlPJOdqAN3
— Glenn Danielson (@glenndanielson) March 20, 2017
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