Letter: Portage County reps supported a transgender sports ban in schools

Editor’s note: The Portager publishes letters to the editor from the community. The opinions expressed are not published because they necessarily reflect those of the publication but because we feel they contribute meaningfully to the local discourse on matters of public interest.

House Bill 151 was passed at 11:15 p.m. last Friday. This bill infuriates me because it is tantamount to state-sponsored rape. The bill, which intends to allow for external and internal examination of the genitalia to determine whether a “she” was once a “he,” is intended to protect our sports from having people with excess testosterone play against other girls.

What infuriates me is the internal examination, which may be a bimanual examination by a doctor. Anyone who has gone through that understands that it can be very painful and it is extremely invasive.

I believe that this bill violates the Fourth and Fifth Amendments of the Constitution, in addition to being a travesty against those who naturally produce excessive testosterone who are still biologically female. Both Diane Grendell and Gail Pavliga voted for this bill; they are the state representatives for Portage County.

Now this horrific bill goes to the Senate, and it’s my prayer that there’s some common sense, sorely lacking in our legislature right now, enough to kill this bill before it gets to Governor DeWine’s desk. If it does get to his desk, I hope that he vetoes it and sends it back to the legislature daring them to override his veto.

The fact that this was passed in the first week of Pride Month is a slap in the face of all transgender people. I myself am not transgender, but this bill goes beyond the pale in its proposed actions to prevent transgender athletes from competing in sports against other girls.

We can do something about this by voting out Gail Pavliga and Diane Grendell this November. In the meantime, I suggest calling them, our state senator, Jerry Cirino, and Governor DeWine. Call, write, protest. This bill needs to die a horrible death.

Elizabeth Stapleton, Kent

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