Left-leaning media figures blasted Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis after he signed legislation Tuesday morning protecting girls in the state from being edged out in sports competitions by biological males.
The popular Republican governor signed the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act, legislation he said during a follow-up press conference was designed to protect equal opportunities for girls and women to get athletic scholarships to colleges and universities.
But some reporters not only appeared to object to the legislation itself, but they also took umbrage at DeSantis’ timing in signing it — on the first day of Pride Month.
“Florida governor Ron DeSantis continues his quest to become the pretender to the MAGA throne,” said MSNBC host Joy Reid during her Tuesday evening program.
“He banned transgender women athletes from participating in sports on the first day of Pride Month, nonetheless,” she went on before claiming, without evidence, that he was “derelict” in his “handling of the pandemic.”
“This is disgusting,” left-wing Temple University Prof. Marc Lamont Hill noted on Twitter.
Bulwark writer Tim Miller added that he thought it was “grotesque” that DeSantis was “bringing his daughter as a prop” to his signing.
Five years ago this month, a gunman killed 49 people and wounded 53 others at the Pulse nightclub, which served LGBTQ people in Orlando, Florida,” CNN contributor Keith Boykin noted. “Today, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis disgraced their memory by signing an anti-trans bill on the first day of LGBTQ Pride Month.”
This is disgusting. https://t.co/sPihBStwZK
— Marc Lamont Hill (@marclamonthill) June 1, 2021
Bringing his daughter as a prop for this is grotesque https://t.co/a3hSbrucMs
— Tim Miller (@Timodc) June 1, 2021
Five years ago this month, a gunman killed 49 people and wounded 53 others at the Pulse nightclub, which served LGBTQ people in Orlando, Florida.
Today, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis disgraced their memory by signing an anti-trans bill on the first day of LGBTQ Pride Month. https://t.co/B9gZ4R3HWL
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) June 1, 2021
In addition, CNN railed at DeSantis and the legislation in a story published Tuesday, claiming that “a person’s gender is an innate sense of identity” while adding “the factors that go into determining the sex listed on a birth certificate may include anatomy, genetics and hormones, and there is broad natural variation in each of these categories.”
“For this reason, the language of ‘biological sex,’ as used in this legislation, can be overly simplistic and misleading,” the story continued.
At the signing ceremony, one reporter appears to suggest that DeSantis was attempting to send a message of discrimination against the transgender community due to the timing of the legislation.
“It’s not a message to anything other than saying we’re going to protect fairness in women’s sports,” DeSantis shot back. “We believe that it’s important to have integrity in competition, and we think that it’s important to be able to compete on a level playing field.”
He went on to defend himself and his state’s legislation during an appearance Tuesday evening on Fox News’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
After the host played a video clip of a high school female athlete who previously appeared on his show and recounted how she lost several competitions to biological males despite her best efforts, Carlson brought in the Florida governor to discuss the situation, first noting that other GOP governors have had the chance to sign similar bills but didn’t after it appeared they were pressured by corporations and athletic leagues.
“I remember as these bills were going through various legislatures, the NCAA put out a statement saying ‘any state that enacts this, we’re not gonna hold events there,'” DeSantis said, adding that threat led him to call the Florida Speaker of the House and double down on getting the bill he signed Tuesday passed and enacted.
“You can’t be cowed by these organizations, but particularly by woke corporations from doing the right thing,” he continued. “My view was throughout this whole time, we have to protect our girls.
“It is discriminatory to force them to compete against biological males, and so if the price of having a tournament is I have to deny equal opportunity to hundreds of thousands of young girl and women athletes throughout Florida, I am much more willing to stand with the girls, and to hell with these events,” DeSantis added.
He went on to note that one of his state’s top female high school runners missed a regional competition in New England by two places earlier this year — two places that “went to biological males.”
“She did everything that she could. She put herself in the position, and had they had fair competition, she would have advanced, she could have advanced in her career,” the governor added.
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